Bhubaneswar: Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik had earlier directed to complete a good portion of Ekamra Kshetra work before Mahashivaratri so that devotees in large numbers can get a serene experience of viewing the ‘mahadeep’.
To review the progress of work, 5T secretary VK Pandian visited the Lingaraj Temple area in the early hours of Saturday and made on the spot review of the progress made.
He directed the officials to expedite the work and set the target of November end for completion of land acquisition. It is learnt from the review that 80% land acquisition has already been completed. The 5T Secretary appreciated the officials for speedy work in spite of the COVID-19 situation.
He also directed the authorities to complete the new alternate roads for the convenience of devotees. The development of alternate roads will help in making a pathway around Bindusagar Tank. Access to the temple would be through e-vehicles so that vehicular pollution and smoke are kept away from the main temple. This will help pilgrims as well as protect the monuments from pollution and smoke.
The new road from Lingaraj market to Taleswar chhak, connecting road from new Lingaraj market to Bindusaar Tank, development of eastern plaza in front of the temple and northern plaza at northern gate bus parking near Brajabandhu Kalyan Mandap, development of Badheibanka are the focus areas of the review .
Land of Gopaltirtha mutt and Shankranda mutt has already been acquired and after acquisition of remaining buildings and land, devotees will have a clear view of Bindusagar Tank from the Northern gate of Lingaraj Temple. The open space will give devotees a divine experience of being able to see the temple and Bindusagar Tank together.
Eco-friendly waste disposal methods will be implemented to make the premises clean.
Among other things, facilities and amenities for pilgrims were discussed as well.
Mahashivaratri being the main festival of Lingaraj Mahaprabhu, officials were instructed to keep that as a target date for completion of many components of the overall plan for the benefit of lakhs of devotees visiting during that time.