Mrunal Manmay Dash

Odisha government on Thursday declared holiday for all schools and colleges in the State on January 27 on the occasion of SAMALEI project inauguration in Sambalpur.

Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik will inaugurate the Samaleswari Temple Area Management and Local Economy Initiatives (SAMALEI) project on January 27.

The rituals for the inauguration have already commenced from Monday.

As per reports, a Kalash Yatra will be taken out by women in the city as final part of the rituals on January 26.

The water brought during the Yatra will be used for holy bath of the Goddess.

What is SAMALEI Project?

The redevelopment project worth Rs 200 crore for the shrine of Goddess Samaleswari in Sambalpur was announced by CM Naveen Patnaik on February 17, 2021.

The redevelopment plan included the construction of four heritage gates on the four sides of the temple and other infrastructure facilities like parking slots, vending zones and toilets near the temple for the welfare of thousands of devotees and tourists who throng the shrine every day.

Apart from that, housing projects for servitors of the temple, a 30-meter-wide road to connect the temple zone with the Mahanadi bank were also in the plan. The road is said to help in the daily conduct of Mahanadi alati rituals for the presiding Goddess.

The government had also planned to develop 108 acres of area around the temple.