Kathmandu, September 18
Bal Gopaleshwor temple in the middle of Rani Pokhari is unlikely to be rebuilt before the upcoming Tihar festival.
The temple used to be opened to public only on the day of Bhai Tika during Tihar festival every year before it was destroyed in the 2015 earthquakes. People without brothers and sisters celebrated the festival and received tika at the temple.
A report prepared by heritage reconstruction research sub-committee under the International Relations Committee of the Parliament has stated that the reconstruction of Bal Gopaleshwor temple in the middle of Rani Pokhari will be completed before Tihar festival.
However, this is unlikely as bodies responsible for rebuilding the temple are still in confusion over the reconstruction model. Reconstruction of the temple remains halted for the past two months owing to dispute over reconstruction model.
The parliamentary committee had formed a sub-committee to look into the matter to address public dissatisfaction with sluggish pace of reconstruction.
The committee is headed by senior leader of Nepal Communist Party (NCP) and former prime minister Madhav Kumar Nepal. Nepal had also made a field visit to Rani Pokhari three days after the sub-committee was formed.
The National Reconstruction Authority had agreed to halt reconstruction after experts were divided on whether to restore the temple to Granthakut model or Rana-era model.
Bhes Narayan Dahal, director general at the Department of Archaeology, said reconstruction of the temple before Tihar was ‘unlikely’. “Due to dispute over the reconstruction model, the temple is unlikely to be rebuilt any time soon,” Dahal said.
The sub-committee has also stated that Rs 16.4 million is yet to be paid to the contractor who had used concrete in the pond. The payment also includes the cost incurred while removing concrete structures.
A version of this article appears in print on September 19, 2018 of The Himalayan Times.