Century-old temple demolished in Berhampur

Berhampur: Nearly a century-old temple was demolished in Hanuman Bazar in an eviction drive here after shifting the deities to a temporary place, official sources said today.

The administration had given around one-month time to Hanuman temple authorities to shift the deities before carrying out demolition on Thursday. "We demolished the temple because it was constructed on government land," sub-collector (Berhampur) Ajit Mishra said.

The anti-encroachment drive jointly launched by the revenue department, Berhampur Municipal Corporation, Berhampur Development Authority (BDA) and police was postponed to give sufficient time to the encroachers and temple authorities to move away before November 23.

"Since the temple has enough land to construct another place of worship, we will take steps to construct a new Hanuman temple in the area and install the deities", mayor of the corporation S.S.Das said.

The new temple would be constructed by raising fund through collection of donations from the public.

The anti-encroachment drive would continue for some more days in Bada Bazar. The people fully cooperated with the administration and there was no protest, police said.

Police personnel were deployed in the area to maintain law and order. Several multi-stored buildings have also been demolished during the drive. Earlier the administration had issued notices to the building owners to evict.

The busy commercial area, considered the nerve centre of the town, is choking with encroachments that have become a nightmare for the commuters.