Lucknow: The Ram Janambhoomi Kshetra Teerth Trust, which has been entrusted with the task of Ram temple construction, finally approved the design for laying the foundation of the temple in Ayodhya. The drawings of the approved design are expected to reach Ayodhya by February 15 to begin the construction of foundation laying.
The design was approved by the trust members during their meeting in Ayodhya on Friday. The Trust General Secretary Champat Rai told media persons that the Larsen and Toubro and Tata Consultancy Services engineers, architects and designers had given a presentation to the trust members during the meeting.
“Trust members have approved the design. Drawings for the approved design are expected to reach Ayodhya by February 15 to begin construction for foundation laying,” said Rai. He, however, remained non-committal on the exact date to begin the construction for laying the foundation.
Till then, Rai said, the work for removing the debris and garbage, which began on Thursday after performing puja and havan, will continue. “They might have to dig up to 40 feet below the ground till natural earth is found to give a go-ahead for construction laying the foundation,” clarified Rai on the delay.
The main worry of the trust members, engineers, designers and architects is construction of the retaining wall surrounding river Saryu bank. They want the construction of the wall with special stones and material so that it lasts a thousand years and even if the Saryu river changes its course.
Rai also claimed that the trust has also held a meeting with senior police, district and security officials to discuss plans for strengthening security during the construction of the temple on Thursday. “There will be a change in the security plan for the complex when construction begins on a war-foot level,” he said.
The trust Treasurer Govind Dev Giri said that due to the change in foundation design, the cost of the temple has gone up from Rs 1,100 crore to Rs 1,500 cr. “It might further go up if the proposed expansion of the temple complex is also taken into account,” he pointed.
The trust is, however, not worried about the cost. “It will be a magnificent and unique structure. An architectural marvel, no matter how much it costs. We will launch the donation drive again to meet the extra cost,” he said.
To collect more donations, the VHP targets to reach 12 crore people in 5 lakh villages. The drive will continue till February 27 and if needed will be launched again.