Bhopal (Madhya Pradesh): The damage to six Saptarishi idols due to thunderstorm at Ujjain’s Mahakal Lok on Sunday has stirred a political row.
The Congress hit out at the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government in the state, alleging corruption in the project and demanded a probe into the "sub-standard" quality of construction. It has also constituted a committee to conduct a probe into the collapse of six idols installed.
On the other hand, home minister Narottam Mishra has alleged that Congress is always searching for issues and never lends a helping hand.
Six out of the seven idols of 'Saptarishis' installed at the Mahakal Lok corridor, developed on the Mahakaleshwar temple premises in Ujjain city, collapsed on Sunday and suffered damages due to gusty winds, officials earlier said.
No person was injured in the incident, they said.
Piyush Babele, media advisor of MP Congress chief Kamal Nath, told PTI that a seven-member committee, including five party legislators, has been constituted to conduct a probe into the collapse of idols at the Mahakal Lok corridor.
After the probe, the panel will submit a report to the MP Congress committee, he said.
'BJP has committed serious irregularities in construction of Mahakal Lok'
Meanwhile, Nath said, "When the then Congress government of Madhya Pradesh had resolved to make a grand construction of the Mahakal temple complex in Ujjain, it could not have imagined that the subsequent government would commit serious irregularities in the construction of Mahakal Lok." He said the sight of idols falling on the ground due to winds in the Mahakal Lok complex is pathetic for any religious person.
"I demand from the chief minister that new idols be installed immediately and those who indulging in sub-standard constructions should be punished after an investigation," he said.
Mishra says, Mahakal Lok under 5 years guarantee
Home Minister Dr Narottam Mishra has tried to defend the government by stating that there is no problem following the collapse of idols as Mahakal Lok is under the guarantee period of five years. He said that whatever damage has occurred, the concerned contractor will do the reconstruction and the entire expense will be incurred by the contractor himself.
Targeting Congress, he said “Congress is always in search of issues during the time of calamity and never lends a helping hand. During the Corona period, Kamal Nath had not gone to any hospital or any relief centre. Same is the case of Digvijaya Singh.”
Even when Mandsaur was battling with flood during the time of the previous Congress government, Kamal Nath was sitting at Mantralaya while jawans rushed to help the victims there. He also said that Congress has gotten limited to twitter and papers.
'It is Congress politics'
Meanwhile, state BJP spokesman Pankaj Chaturvedi said the Congress levelled allegations of corruption during the last "Simhastha" (a religious event organised once in 12 years at Ujjain) also and constituted a committee for a probe into it.
This committee did not find any irregularity and the previous Congress government in the state had said in the Assembly that there was no irregularity during Simhastha, Chaturvedi said.
On Sunday, the gusty winds damaged six out of 160 idols (at the Mahakal Lok corridor), he said and added, "The Congress should conduct a probe again as there is no irregularity. It's their politics." Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the first phase of the Mahakal Lok corridor project in October last year.
Ujjain Collector Kumar Purushottam on Sunday said there are a total of 160 idols installed at the Mahakal Lok corridor and out of them, six idols of 'Saptarishis' (seven sages) that were around 10 feet tall fell down at around 4 pm as strong winds swept through the area.