BHUBANESWAR: The Archaeological Survey of India (ASI), Bhubaneswar circle, has flagged shortage of khondalite stones which may delay the ongoing repair and renovation works at the Sri Jagannath temple, its smaller shrines and other Centrally-protected monuments in Odisha.
There are 80 ASI-protected monuments in Odisha and a majority of them are built with khondalite. The Central conservation agency used to procure khondalite stones from Tapang through contractors but after the State government reserved it, it has been facing a shortage of stones.
After ASI drew attention of the State government towards the issue, the latter on Tuesday assured supply of stones that would be used only for repairing the Jagannath temple main complex at Puri.
“But to continue work on smaller shrines within Srimandir complex and other important monuments across the State, we have to again approach the government. The work may be delayed,” said ASI Odisha head Arun Malik, adding that the authorities concerned have to come up with a permanent solution.
Currently, ASI is carrying out repair works on the Vimana of Srimandir and conservation of Laxmi Mandir on the premises would start soon.
While water-tightening, pointing and replacement of damaged stones are being carried out at the Vimana, the ASI will also carry out similar measures, besides replacing the floor and a prop in the Laxmi temple.
Besides, repair and restoration works of the temple sanctum sanctorum will be done when the deities go on a nine-day sojourn to the Gundicha temple during Rath Yatra. Apart from this, repair work on 134 minor temples inside the Srimandir complex has been planned.
Last year, State had reserved khondalite blocks at Chandia (4 acre), Sukhuapada (78.3 acre) and Teligarh (27.5 acre) in Jajpur district, Gobindpur (20.3 acre) in Cuttack district, Kurumpada decorative stone block (1.67 acre) in Khurda and Kundakundi Kunda stone quarry (4.67 acre) of Narangarh in Khurda district for work under the ABHADA scheme.