The Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) plans to install statues of Jaya-Vijay at the Lions Gate of Shree Jagannath temple in Puri on June 16 and take up the repair work of the 12th Century shrine during the annual Rath Jatra starting from July 4, said officials.
Of the pair of statues of Jaya-Vijay, the idol of Jaya was damaged during cyclone ‘Fani’ that made landfall near Puri on May 3.
“The ASI will install two statues at the Lion’s Gate on June 16, a day before the Lord’s Snan Purnima (bathing rituals),” said P K Mohapatra, Chief Administrator, Shree Jagannath Temple Administration (SJTA).
Mohapatra said that the condition of the Neelachakra (blue wheel atop the temple), remained unaffected in the cyclone. He said drone camera pictures taken from different angles have proved that the Neelachakra remained unaffected in the cyclone. He said steps will be taken to strengthen the Neelachakra’s base.
“The ASI team will conduct a chemical analysis of the Neelachakra to know its durability,” Mahapatra said.
The SJTA Chief Administrator also informed that ASI will begin repair work of the Garbha Griha (sanctum sanctorum), Nata Mandap, Rosa Ghara (temple kitchen) and Jagmohan inside the temple premises between Rath Jatra and Bahuda Jatra (From July 4 to 14).
He said the ASI team will inspect the sanctum sanctorum of the main temple on July 5 and 6.
“Though no crack has been found on the roof of the Garbha Griha, the ASI will carry out an inspection of the roof on the basis of the complaint by the servitors,” Mahapatra said.