India and Nepal signed agreements on Thursday under which India will be funding a total of Nepali Rs 142 million for the reconstruction of three cultural heritage projects in Nepal.
“Contracts were signed on Thursday for conservation and retrofitting of Seto Machindranath Temple, Construction of Dharmashalaat Budhanikantha Temple and conservation as well as the development of Kumari Chhen and Kumari Niwas,” said the Indian Embassy in Kathmandu.
The signing event was witnessed by the Head of Development Partnership & Reconstruction Wing of the Indian Embassy, Project Consultant INTACH, officials from CLPIU (Building), Mayor of Lalitpur, Mathadish of Budhaneelkantha Temple, Ward Chairman of ward number 25 of Kathmandu, and representatives of User Committees of the Project.
“At times there only use to talk about political matters when it came in between Nepal and India now with the agreement which has been signed now, funding by Government of India to develop and reconstruct the religious sites of Nepal, it shows the deepened relation between Nepali and Indian citizens and it also is the example that it never can be broken or shaken off,” Nilkaji Shakya, ward-chair of ward no. 25 Kathmandu said.
“The projects are being implemented under USD 50 million grant assistance committed by the Government of India for the post-earthquake reconstruction of the Cultural Heritage sites across 8 districts of Nepal,” the embassy said.
The Seto Machindranath Temple is a significant living heritage site located in Jana Bahal in central Kathmandu. It is one of the main shrines of the protector God of Kathmandu Valley and is worshipped by both Hindus and Buddhists alike.
The conservation and retrofitting of the temple will be carried out at a cost of NRs 626 million.
Located inside Ratnakar Mahavihara, the Kumari Chhen is a historic house of the living goddess of Patan. The living goddess is central to the culture and traditions of the Newar Buddhist community and the Kumariniwas has an important place in the rituals associated with the living goddess. The conservation and development of Kumari Chhen and Kumari Niwas NRs 456 million.
The Seto Machindranath temple and Kumari Chhen and Kumari Niwas will be conserved as per Nepal’s Ancient Monument Preservation Act with an effort to restore the two living heritage sites to their past glory and traditions.
Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage (INTACH) has been appointed as the Project Management Consultant for supervising the conservation, retrofitting and construction of these two projects.
Dharmashala at Budhaneelkantha lies within the heritage precinct of Budhanilkantha temple locally known as Narayanthan. CLPIU (Building) of NRA is the implementing agency and the Dharmashala will be constructed at a cost of NRs. 334 million. The Dharmashala is expected to facilitate the visit of pilgrims and tourists visiting the sacred temple.