KU rebuilding quake-damaged Tripureshwor Mahadev temple

Kathmandu, January 14

Kathmandu University has started rebuilding Tripureshwor Mahadev temple, which was damaged in the 2015 earthquakes.

For this, the government will allow the university to run its music department on the temple’s premises, which sprawls in an area of 9157.32 square metres.

The university will also pay a rent of Rs 15,000 per month to Guthi Sansthan to cover daily expenses of the temple. Kathmandu University had signed a memorandum of understanding to this effect with Guthi Sansthan and Department of Archaeology after the devastating earthquakes damaged the Mahadev temple and other temples and satals on its premises.

Kathmandu University had proposed to renovate the temple and build additional satals on the temple’s premises to  run its music department in 2014, but after the earthquakes the university agreed to reconstruct the temple and rebuild satals to run its music classes, according to Guthi Sansthan officials.

The university will build new satals around the temple and on the banks of the Bagmati River to the south. KU has removed 17 squatters family living there for the purpose, according to  site supervisor Sushil Rajbhandari.

Department of Archaeology has estimated the cost of reconstructing the temple to stand around

Rs 27 million. Gardens and ponds will also be constructed on the premises of the temple using  traditional construction methods and material.

Program Director at Kathmandu Valley Preservation Trust Rohit Kumar Ranjitkar, who also designed the reconstruction model of the temple, said, “We have done our best to retain every minute details and only traditional material will be used for the reconstruction of the temple.” The temple is expected to be reconstructed with two years.

Assistant Professor of music at the university and coordinator of the construction program Lochan Rijal said running the music department on the temple’s premises would help students explore the rich Nepali musical tradition.

“Apart from the archaeological and historical importance of tour heritage, we are hoping to enrich the intangible heritage like music from the site,” Rijal said.

The university has already started constructing basement of the satals.

The main priest of the temple said the temple was built in 1818 by Lalit Tripura Sundari in memory of her deceased husband king Rana Bahadur Shah. It is also believed that Tripura Sundari was married before she reached puberty and was widowed a virgin.

Tripura Sundari is also considered the first woman scholar in Nepali history, who wrote ‘Dharmagrantha’. She has also written  poems and  books in Sanskrit and Nepali language.