Bal Gopaleshwor temple unlikely to be rebuilt by Tihar

Kathmandu, August 17

Although Bhai Tika is just two months away, reconstruction of  Bal Gopaleshwor temple, which is situated in the middle of Ranipokhari, is yet to begin.

The Department of Archaeology had said earlier that the temple would be reconstructed before the festival.

People without brothers and sisters visit Bal Gopaleshwor temple to receive tika on Bhai Tika during Tihar.

According to the department, although it had instructed the contractor to complete reconstruction of the temple at the earliest, the demolition process took longer than expected. Spokesperson at the department Ram Bahadur Kunwar said reconstruction of the temple would begin at the earliest.

“Reconstruction work will begin soon, but the temple may not be ready for Bhai Tika,” Kunwar told The Himalayan Times.

As per the contract, the contractor is supposed to complete reconstruction of the temple within a year. However, the temple is unlikely to be rebuilt by June 2018. The estimated cost of rebuilding the temple is Rs 16 million.

The department had taken over the responsibility of reconstructing the temple in October last year from the office of Kathmandu Metropolitan City.

The reconstruction of iconic Ranipokhari was halted in September 2016 following differences between the department and KMC over the use of roller-compacted concrete by the latter for construction of pillars and foundation of the temple.

The department had directed KMC to put the reconstruction work on hold after the latter erected RCC pillars ‘against the original design prepared by it’.

The UNESCO was also concerned about “inappropriate rebuilding of historic structures. The historic structure of religious importance dating back to 1670 AD is considered among the most famous landmarks in Kathmandu.

The temple, commissioned by King Pratap Malla in 1670 to console his queen, who was bereaved of their son, would be rebuilt by the department without losing its originality, said an official at NRA.