SAMBALPUR: The fabric backdrop of the deity in Samaleswari temple will be replaced with silver by January next year.
Announcing this on Tuesday, the temple trust board said apart from the backdrop, the Chhatar (an umbrella-shaped decor) of the goddess will be made with pure silver. It appealed to the devotees to donate for the purpose.
President of the board Sanjaya Baboo said currently, the deity has a backdrop made up of cloth.
“Since a number of renovation works is underway in and around the temple, we decided to replace it with an attractive silver backdrop. Moreover, the Chhatar of the goddess has become outworn and it will be replaced with a new one made up of silver. If everything goes as per plan, the silver backdrop and Chhatar will be installed in the temple by January next year,” he informed.
The Endowments department has already approved the proposal in this regard. Besides, the design of the backdrop and Chhatar have been prepared by a jeweller. Baboo said it has been estimated that around 100 kg silver will be required for the purpose.
“While the temple has around 11 kg silver ornaments, which will be melted for making the backdrop and Chhatar, we have appealed to devotees to donate silver or cash for the purpose and take receipt of donation from the temple trust board. We will arrange the rest silver soon and if required, the trust will also contribute,” he said.
Sources said many devotees have expressed willingness and approached the board for making donations.
The 16th century shrine, constructed by the first Chauhan king of Sambalpur Balram Dev, is a major tourist attraction of the region. The temple has been constructed in proto-Nagra style. Devotees and tourists from across the State visit the temple throughout the year to have darshan of Maa Samaleswari.