Rajendra Prasad Mohapatra

The Singhadwara (Lion’s gate) of Lord Lingaraj Temple in Bhubaneswar will be plated in silver similar to what has been done to the main doors at the Srimandir in Puri. One and half year deadline has been fixed to complete the project.

The decision to coat the Singhadwar of the 11th century shrine with silver was announced by the Commissioner of Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation (BMC) Sanjay Singh on Friday. Singh, along with officials from the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) visited the temple to conduct a ground survey for the face lift of the shrine’s main entrance gate earlier in the day.  

The team took stock of the status and condition of various other small temples, Natya Mandapa (located in the premises) and the periphery of the grand temple dedicated to Lord Shiva.

“Silver plating of Singhadwara will commence shortly. Major conservation issues of the temple have also been addressed. The work in this direction will start after chalking out a comprehensive conservation plan,” said ASI Superintendent Arun Mallick.

Various leakages have surfaced in the main and other small temples in the premises. However, Mallick said there was no water seepage of alarming proportions in the temple as of now.

“There is nothing to worry about water seepage issues in the temple. Still we have made a plan for water tightening which has been approved. Water tightening work will start shortly,” said Mallick.

Plans are also afoot to repair the defunct lightning arrester in the temple premises.

“We will prepare a detailed plan on the conservation and restoration works of the 11th century shrine soon. Work in this direction will be undertaken shortly without disturbing devotees and servitors inside the temple premises,” said Singh.
Meanwhile, the servitors of the temple have expressed their pleasure over the proposed silver plating of Singhadwar and other conservative measures in the temple.

“The main door of the temple was damaged. All servitors are happy that ASI and Odisha Government have agreed to jointly undertake the silver plating work of the Lion’s gate. We are hopeful that the work will start soon,” said Kamalakant Badu, Secretary Of Badu Nijoga.

It is worth mentioning that the ‘Singhadwara’ of the temple was damaged during cyclone ‘Fani’ in 2019 which was later repaired. However, since that time, the servitors of the temple have been demanding to replace the bronze coating of the wooden door with silver.