‘Bhoomi pooja’ for the restoration of Seto Machindranath temple in Nepal was performed on Sunday in the presence of Indian Ambassador Vinay Mohan Kwatra along with the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of National Reconstruction Authority (NRA) Sushil Gyawali and Mayor of Kathmandu Metropolitan City Bidya Sundar Shakya. The conservation work of Seto Machindranath temple is the first of the 28 cultural heritage conservation and restoration projects being undertaken with a reconstruction of Nepali Rs 5,800 million committed by the Indian Government for the cultural heritage sector.
Built in the 10th Century, the Seto Machindranath temple was damaged during the devastating April 2015 earthquake which saw the death of over 9,000 people in Nepal. 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.
All the 28 sites were identified by Nepal Government and both India and Nepal signed Memorandums of Understandings (MoUs) in August 2017. The Central Level Project Implementation Unit (Building) of NRA is the implementing entity that has been identifying agencies for the restoration works as per be conserved as per Nepal’s Ancient Monument Preservation Act. The Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage (INTACH) has been engaged for technical support, as per the Detailed Project Report approved by the Nepal Government.
Restoration will be done using material close to the original building material at the time of its construction as per the traditional ethos, local traditions, and values that sustains and enriches such living heritage sites in Nepal.
The decorative art surfaces and features such as repousse work, decorative and non-decorative woodworks including timber members with traditional polychrome arts will be documented and conserved through minimal interventions.