Konark temple is safe: Mahesh Sharma

Bhubaneswar: Union Minister of State for Culture and Tourism Mahesh Sharma at a high level meeting with the State Tourism Minister Ashok Chandra Panda Monday assured that there is no threat to the monument and world famous Konark Sun Temple which is also a UNESCO heritage site.

Sharma said, “There is no threat to Konark Temple’s safety. The strength of safety as per the Newton Index is 469 while this monument is 2323. It means the strength of safety factor is 5 times more. As per the MPa(how much stress it can take before it cracks), the level ought to be 1.4, whereas Konark Temple’s is 8. It means approximately 6 times more safety factor.”

He said, “Five issues relating to Konark Temple were raised today (Monday). First was water-logging problem. This is because the temple’s level has gone down. Since it is an ancient monument, it can’t be elevated. The outer level can’t be lowered. A pit will be made at a corner and the accumulated water will be pumped out. We will be taking the action within three months.

“Another issue which was raised earlier was that original carved stones have been replaced with plain stones. After 1997, not a single plain stone has been fixed there. ASI looks after the conservation of 3,686 monuments. Out of these 22 are UNESCO heritage sites. No change can be made in UNESCO site. Hence, there is no possibility of plain stones.”

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