Preserving World Heritage, Thanjavur temple: ASI side of the story.
See the Dinamani (Tamil daily) report of May 5, 2008 at: http://janajaati.blogspot.com/2008/08/imminent-danger-to-thanjavur-big-temple.html
Let us hope that ASI is alive to its responsibilities mandated under law to care for the heritage monuments and responds with alacrity, with compassion and promptly to public concerns.
Brihadishwara renovation in full swing
Monday August 25 2008 02:04 IST
V Gangadharan | ENS
PRESERVING HERITAGE: The adhishtana moulding or Kumudam that was removed. It will be fixed after the IIT submits its report.
CHENNAI: The Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) is waiting for a scientific report to restore an important stone fixture at the Brihadishwara temple in Thanjavur, a world heritage monument, where the restoration work is almost over.
According to Superintending Archaeologist, ASI, Chennai Circle, Sathyabama Badrinath, the strengthening work of the foundation structure at the northern cloister of the mandapam area, an essential feature of the restoration exercise, was over.
Asked, whether the ASI was replacing the ancient stone slabs and ceiling structures with new ones, the ASI official said that only those, which had lost the load bearing capacity, were being replaced.
“We always try to restore only the original and using of new slabs is very rare.” On apprehensions raised by some local residents that the ancient stone fixture at the northeastern part of the main shrine – the adhistana moulding, also known as Kumudam – was broken during the conservation work, Sathyabama said it was not true.
“The moulding was old and dilapidated and it was removed,” she said.
The ASI has sought a scientific report from the Indian Institute of Technology and the moulding would be fixed only after getting the report.
Responding to a question, the top ASI official said the Maratha paintings of the 16th and 17th centuries were being preserved.
Asked about the precautions being taken by the ASI in view of the damage caused to some inscriptions before, she claimed that nothing was damaged by the workers. “Our officials are watchful and have sensitised the workers about the importance of the work they do.”