PURI/ BHUBANESWAR: The Puri district administration has ordered demolition of illegal structures, including an ashram, over a government land at Konark where a New Delhi-based man claimed he was building a replica of the world famous Sun Temple.
Mukesh Jain, the resident of New Delhi, had on Wednesday claimed before mediapersons that he intended to build a replica of the World Heritage Site over 34.6 acres of land under Konark Mouza (plot number - 1,655). His explanation was that the Sun Temple is in ruins and no worship of the Sun God has taken place since last 119 years.
Jain, a follower of self-styled godman of Bigg Boss fame Om Baba, had been staying in an ashram over the land since 2016. Om Baba, who died of COVID-19 last year, had previously claimed to build a replica of the Sun Temple at Konark.
After his death, Jain had taken over the ashram and a few months back, installed an idol of Sun God and began worshipping it. He had constructed the idol at Rajasthan and brought it to Konark. Jain was also carrying out work on other sculptures behind the ashram.
While officials in the Puri administration informed that the land was transferred to IDCO for creation of a land bank, Jain claimed that one Sreejoy Baral had sold him the land. When Gop Tehsildar Subhashish Balta came to know of the illegal constructions on government land, he sent a notice to Jain on November 12 to vacate it. Jain met the Puri Collector on Wednesday who asked him to demolish all the constructions within three days.