Kathmandu [Nepal], February 28 (ANI): Indian Ambassador Vinay Mohan Kwatra, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of National Reconstruction Authority (NRA) Sushil Gyawali, and Mayor of Kathmandu Metropolitan City Bidya Sundar Shakya on Sunday jointly carried out 'bhoomi pooja' for restoration of Seto Machindranath temple in Kathmandu.
High-ranking government officials, local representatives, Officers from Reconstruction and Development Wing of Indian embassy were present at the bhoomi pooja.
According to the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) release, the conservation work of Seto Machindranath temple is first of the 28 cultural heritage conservation and restoration projects being under taken with a reconstruction of Nepali Rs 5,800 million committed by the Indian Government for the cultural heritage sector.
"Indian Government is happy to be associated with Nepal Government in the conservation and restoration of cultural heritage sites in Nepal to preserve the living cultural heritage sites to their past glory," the MEA said.
All the 28 sites were identified by the Nepal Government and both India and Nepal signed an Memorandums of Understandings (MoUs) in this regard in August 2017. The Central Level Project Implementation Unit (Building) of NRA is the implementing entity has been identifying agencies for the restoration works as per be conserved as per Nepal's Ancient Monument Preservation Act.
The Seto Machindranath Temple will be conserved as per Nepal's Ancient Monument Preservation Act, and Department of Archaeology's Basic Guidelines and Manual for conservation and reconstruction of heritage affected by 2015 earthquake using material close to the original building material at the time of its construction as per the traditional ethos, local traditions and values that sustain and enrich such living heritage sites in Nepal.
The Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage (INTACH) has been engaged to provide technical support during the conservation and restoration work as per the detailed project report approved by the Nepal government.
Believed to have been built in 10th Century AD during Malla era, the temple was damaged during the 2015 Gorkha earthquake. The temple located in the heart of Kathmandu city is visited by Hindus and Buddhist devotees to worship Seto Machindranath is considered to be one of the Protectors of the Kathmandu Valley. (ANI)