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Call to project Kamakhya as a religious place of nat�l importance

By Staff Reporter

GUWAHATI, Feb 27 - City-based conservation body Heritage Conservation Society of Assam (HeCSA) has demanded appropriate steps to preserve the pristine environment of the Nilachal Hillock and to project the Kamakhya Temple atop this hillock as a religious institution of national importance.

The conservation body has suggested promulgation of an ordinance to bring an immediate halt to all construction and physical development activities, including renovation, repair and minor construction activities on the entire hillock.

Further, it said a high-power committee comprising members of the bodies managing the temple and its premises, government representatives, professional conservationists, civic societies and heritage conservation bodies should be formed for the purpose of monitoring the developmental activities on the hillock. This committee may also be authorised to formulate an appropriate strategy to �market� Kamakhya Temple and implement this strategy effectively to elevate the Shakti shrine as a �startling� destination for the Hindu pilgrims � who follow the Shakta cult � spread all over the globe, the conservation body said.

In a memorandum to the Speaker of the State Assembly, the conservation body said the most revered Shakti shrine Kamakhya Temple occupies a distinct position among the Hindus who follow the Shakta cult. It has all the potential to become as famous and important as the Vaishno Devi Temple in North India and the Tirupati Temple in South India.

To help it attain such a distinct position, two important steps need to be taken urgently. They are - firstly, the pristine environment of the entire Nilachal Hillock be adequately conserved and preserved and secondly, Kamakhya be �marketed� appropriately as a destination of major importance for the Hindu Shakta pilgrims, HeCSA said.

The conservation body rued that of late there has been a spurt in construction activities on and around the Nilachal Hillock. These construction activities are carried out paying least respect to the religious sanctity, socio-cultural ambience, environmental ethos of the temple and other monuments on the hillock as well as general aesthetic sensibility. Indiscriminate developmental activities are endangering the entire heritage and the historical legacy of this great seat of Tantric mysticism and one of the oldest of the 51 Shakti Peethas (seats/shrines) of the country.

Besides the main temple, there are numerous peripheral religious as well as historical monuments on the hillock, which are either becoming irrelevant or marginalised and are facing the danger of disappearing forever. Also, many of the activities carried out on the hillock and the temple premises may not be very appropriate or in conformity with the norms generally associated with a religious site.

There is an urgent need to carry out all developmental works on the hillock and the temple peripheries in an effective and congruent manner. For this, the conservation body has suggested that all construction activities be immediately stopped and frozen so that further damage to the overall environment of the hillock and the temple precinct is prevented.

It said the high-power committee that it has suggested, may be entrusted with demarcating the boundary of the Nilachal Hillock and preparing an inventory of the numerous monuments and other religious/historical monuments located on the hillock.

Besides, this committee may also be authorised with the task of preparing a master plan for the Nilachal Hillock and approve all future developmental activities, alteration and renovation of the existing structures on it, ensuring its religious sanctity, environmental ethos and ambience, and also in keeping with world class standards.

The high-power committee may further be given the task of carrying out a proper census of the hillock�s indigenous population and evicting all encroachers and dismantling all illegal constructions.

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Call to project Kamakhya as a religious place of nat�l importance

GUWAHATI, Feb 27 - City-based conservation body Heritage Conservation Society of Assam (HeCSA) has demanded appropriate steps to preserve the pristine environment of the Nilachal Hillock and to project the Kamakhya Temple atop this hillock as a religious institution of national importance.

The conservation body has suggested promulgation of an ordinance to bring an immediate halt to all construction and physical development activities, including renovation, repair and minor construction activities on the entire hillock.

Further, it said a high-power committee comprising members of the bodies managing the temple and its premises, government representatives, professional conservationists, civic societies and heritage conservation bodies should be formed for the purpose of monitoring the developmental activities on the hillock. This committee may also be authorised to formulate an appropriate strategy to �market� Kamakhya Temple and implement this strategy effectively to elevate the Shakti shrine as a �startling� destination for the Hindu pilgrims � who follow the Shakta cult � spread all over the globe, the conservation body said.

In a memorandum to the Speaker of the State Assembly, the conservation body said the most revered Shakti shrine Kamakhya Temple occupies a distinct position among the Hindus who follow the Shakta cult. It has all the potential to become as famous and important as the Vaishno Devi Temple in North India and the Tirupati Temple in South India.

To help it attain such a distinct position, two important steps need to be taken urgently. They are - firstly, the pristine environment of the entire Nilachal Hillock be adequately conserved and preserved and secondly, Kamakhya be �marketed� appropriately as a destination of major importance for the Hindu Shakta pilgrims, HeCSA said.

The conservation body rued that of late there has been a spurt in construction activities on and around the Nilachal Hillock. These construction activities are carried out paying least respect to the religious sanctity, socio-cultural ambience, environmental ethos of the temple and other monuments on the hillock as well as general aesthetic sensibility. Indiscriminate developmental activities are endangering the entire heritage and the historical legacy of this great seat of Tantric mysticism and one of the oldest of the 51 Shakti Peethas (seats/shrines) of the country.

Besides the main temple, there are numerous peripheral religious as well as historical monuments on the hillock, which are either becoming irrelevant or marginalised and are facing the danger of disappearing forever. Also, many of the activities carried out on the hillock and the temple premises may not be very appropriate or in conformity with the norms generally associated with a religious site.

There is an urgent need to carry out all developmental works on the hillock and the temple peripheries in an effective and congruent manner. For this, the conservation body has suggested that all construction activities be immediately stopped and frozen so that further damage to the overall environment of the hillock and the temple precinct is prevented.

It said the high-power committee that it has suggested, may be entrusted with demarcating the boundary of the Nilachal Hillock and preparing an inventory of the numerous monuments and other religious/historical monuments located on the hillock.

Besides, this committee may also be authorised with the task of preparing a master plan for the Nilachal Hillock and approve all future developmental activities, alteration and renovation of the existing structures on it, ensuring its religious sanctity, environmental ethos and ambience, and also in keeping with world class standards.

The high-power committee may further be given the task of carrying out a proper census of the hillock�s indigenous population and evicting all encroachers and dismantling all illegal constructions.

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