Ancient Temples Discovered During Demolition in Varanasi

The world famous Kashi Vishwanath Temple at Varanasi will soon be accessible to pilgrims directly from the mythological ghats of river Ganga.

The process of constructing a corridor by the Uttar Pradesh government between the river Ganga and Kashi Vishwanath Temple in Varanasi is in full swing. The project has been sanctioned 600 crores by Yogi government. In the first phase, 175 out of 296identified buildings have already been purchased and in the second phase, 130 more buildings were identified.

The work on the project will tentatively begin by Dec 12th, after receiving the consent from the State Cabinet.

A large number of structures of historical importance were recovered during demolition. Details of which have been included in the detailed project report (DPR) report for developing corridor area as a complex for Ancient Temple.

The DPR has been presented to Chief Minister Yogi Adiyanath on November 23rd during his visit to Varanasi on Karthik Poornima to celebrate Dev Diwali. The work on the project will tentatively begin by Dec 12th, after receiving the consent from the State Cabinet.

While briefing about the project KVT chief executive officer and Varanasi Development Authority (VDA) secretary Vishal Singh said that “The 56 meters wide corridor will be over 300 meters in length. We have surveyed and mapped the localities between Neelkanth Gate-Manikarnika Ghat and Saraswati Phatak-Lalita Ghat[1]. We consulted scholars of Veda and Shastras and experts of the archaeology department, architects and reputed international companies to prepare a bird’s eye-view design of the project”.

The government had to tackle the problem of rehabilitating affected tenants and shopkeepers in the process of purchasing 296 buildings.

He further added, the demolition of purchased buildings has been scaled up and is being done manually as taking bulldozers inside the proposed corridor will be possible only after removing some buildings along the main road.

He also said that temple from the Samudragupta era had been recovered near Manikarnika Ghat. The temple was covered up by walls in order to construct the house with toilet on its top. He also mentioned that 43 more structures have been identified for preservation during demolition, the structures include ancient temples, library and buildings of architectural importance[2].

The government had to tackle the problem of rehabilitating affected tenants and shopkeepers in the process of purchasing 296 buildings for the preservation of ancient temples and other buildings of historical importance.

The project once completed will make it easy for the pilgrims to access Kashi Vishwanath temple from Ganga ghats. The pilgrims will have access to Kashi Vishwanath temple from Manikarnika, Jalasen and Lalita ghats. The Chhattdwar point will be opened for vehicles.

The idea behind the project is to provide a world-class facility for the pilgrims in and around the temple and give a boost to spiritual tourism.