Raghunath Temple in Jammu and Kashmir (Photo Credit: NewsNation)
Jammu Kashmir tourism department restores 300-year-old Raghunath Temple in valley On the banks of River Jhelum lies a centuries old Raghunath Temple. Situated in Srinagar’s downtown area of Fateh Kadal, the temple has been in dilapidated condition from last 30 years. The tourism department of Jammu Kashmir has taken it upon themselves to restore this heritage.
With the onset of militancy in 1990 which resulted into exodus of Pandit community from Jammu Kashmir, the temples of the valley have been in dilapidated condition. However, the government has started to restore this heritage temple to its old glory. The officials confirm that over 40 lakhs have been given for restoration and the temple will be open to the public within next four to five months. Supervising officials Noor Mohammad says. “ Raghunath temple is around 300 years old, we are doing restoration work of the temple. We are restoring the Maharaja brick work, CGI sheeting and taking all the stuff and mud out. We have been given 43 lakhs for its restoration and we have been working here for the last three months. After proper restoration, people will come to see the temple'.
This temple was built by Maharaja Gulab Singh in the year 1835. The temple is dedicated to Lord Ram. The Kashmiri Pandits in the valley have welcomed this step and said all the temples which have been left in ruins need to be restored soon. Sanjay Tickoo of Kashmir Pandit Sangharsh Samiti says, “ It’s a welcome step that Raghunath temple which is 250-300 years old is getting renovated.We are happy that the temple bells will again reverberate, Puja will be held. And similarly we are hopeful that all the temples which are in ruins will be restored so that people can go and pray at these places.’’ The Tourism Department under the smart city scheme has taken three projects of renovation in the beginning in Srinagar city. Raghunath Temple, Church at Dalgate and a Mosque again in the downtown area of Srinagar would be renovated exactly in the same way as they used to be. Around two centuries old Protestant Christian Church is also being renovated by the tourism department in Srinagar.
All these heritage properties would be restored in the best possible way. Mohd Afzal is supervising the Church restoration at Dalgate Srinagar. He says that, ‘’ this is an old church and tourism department is doing these restorations, we have started with roofing of the church and we want to bring back the church in its original glory. It’s completely damaged and we are expecting that within months we will be able to restore it. ‘’ The government says this is the first step towards restorations of heritage properties in the valley. More such temples, Mosques, Gurudwara and Churches would be brought back to its glory.