AK Bhargava, ASI nodal officer and superintending archaeologist
Q) Do you agree that the strength of the Kedarnath Temple is a subject of study for the international community after the 2013 disaster?
A) Yes, it’s a subject of interest for all experts and agencies concerned across the world. We are, in fact, trying to explore all possible reasons and facts as to the robustness of the temple. ASI has already engaged IIT Chennai for a study and restoration works of broken walls of the temple. Efforts are on to find the true reasons what helped the structure withstand the natural disaster.
Q) Has the ASI reached a definite conclusion on the reasons behind the temple’s ability to withstand the 2013 disaster?
A) A study on temple wall and health of the structure is still going on. IIT Chennai experts are busy collecting data for the same. They recently visited the temple site to gather more information. We cannot say anything before IIT Chennai gives its report.
Q) How long it will take to complete the restoration of the damaged temple walls?
A) It will be over in three years. We have already cleared the debris from the platform and cleaned the surface. Chemical cleaning of the wall is being done by ASI experts. We have also restored the base platform of the statue of Nandi in front of the temple. IIT Chennai will be carrying out the retrofitting of the broken stones of the temple wall.