SIVASAGAR, Oct 24 - Even as tension prevails in this historic temple township in the wake of permanent construction work being undertaken around the Ram Janaki Mandir located inside the historic Siva doul complex, several organisations and citizens here have opposed any such construction works inside the complex. They have also demanded dismantling of the earlier constructions as well, which were not part of the original project consisting of the three important archeological monuments � Sivadoul, Bishnu doul and the Devi doul.
Queen Draupadi or Modambika, sister of Barraja Fuleswari had the three temples constructed in 1733 AD on the north-west bank of the huge Sivasagar tank (114 pura, two bigha, two katha and five lecha) in memory of her husband Swargadeo Sutanpha (Siva Singha) (1714-1744). The triangular plot on which the three douls stand, is protected by a massive brick wall. The space within the complex is not sufficient while taking into account the fact that about a million devotees that throng the Siva doul every year during Siva Ratri.
The Ram Janaki Mandir, the Sani Mandir, the Temple Development committee office and the Gayan Gaon Kirtan Ghar have resulted in further shrinkage of open space, besides destroying the majestic beauty of the whole complex. The conscious citizens of Sivasagar and various social organisations have on different fora opposed the growing tendency to distort ancient monuments in and around Sivasagar.
Bir Lachit Sena, Tai Aom Students� Union, Ahom Gana Mancha and several other organisations dismantled the new rcc construction works near the Ram Janaki Mandir, which they believe as illegal, as the whole complex is a protected site under the Archeological Survey of India and plans are afoot to gain for it, UNESCO�s recognition as a World Heritage Site. Sringkhol Chaliha, leader of the Bir Lachit Sena vehemently opposed growing influence of a section of traders inside the temple complex, who he feels do not know anything about Assamese cultures and traditions. Krishna Agarwalla, a trader, who allegedly financed the new construction, was brought to the site by the workers of Bir Lachit Sena on Monday and he promised before the people gathered there not to go ahead with the construction work. Sivasagar police took Chaliha to the police station to defuse the tension and later allowed him to go. Basanta Gogoi, vice-president, ATASU central committee said on Tuesday that he, being a member of the Siva Doul Development Committee, has been opposing all constructions inside Siva doul complex since many years now, but the committee is not yet ready to initiate action, for reasons not known to him.
Senior journalist Atanu Bora, when asked, said that he wants all other constructions to be dismantled and the Sani Mandir and Ram Janaki Mandir management committees should be given space and time for the move, as they are more than 50-years old. Uzzal Thakur, general secretary, Rongpur Sahitya Sabha said that no other construction should have been permitted, while Jayanta Rajkonwar, prominent social worker, said that it that being a historical monument, there should not be any new addition or permanent construction, other than the three original temples.