The tall claims of the state government to promote cultural heritage and tourism fall flat as centuries old Krimachi Pandava temples sans two-km road connectivity for the past 50 years.
The temples that withstood the vagaries of time are presently virtually shouting for their recognition from the masses. Standing tall amidst eerie silence, the group of seven ancient temples that are a wonderful piece of craftsmanship give unforgettable experience to visitors.
Ironically, this historically significant place that is one of the most appropriate sites as far as heritage tourism is concerned, has been deprived of the basic infrastructures like road connectivity and other basic facilities for years. Despite being preserved as a monument of national importance and managed by the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) for the last over 50 years, the place is still waiting for proper development.
The group of ancient temples surrounded by the picturesque locations is located at Krimachi, a small hamlet on the Udhampur-Pancheri Road, just 10 km from the district headquarter. Dating to the eighth century AD, the complex consists of five large and two small shrines dedicated to Lord Shiva situated on the banks of the two rivulets namely Birunala and Krimachi.
It is painful to note that the state government and district administration did not do anything to provide road connectivity and other basic facilities to these temples, said vice-president of Social Reform and Charitable Organisation (SRCO), an NGO, Parvesh Parihar.
He added that the ASI was trying to preserve the pristine glory of the ancient monuments, but apathy of district administration and government fail to provide road connectivity to the monuments.
Sarita Devi of Indian Democratic Human Rights Organisation, an NGO, alleged that due to apathy of administration and state government, no work has been done to explore the historical treasure of Udhampur temples.
Manju Gupta , who came here along with his family , told that the development of the heritage site could not be achieved and tourist couldn't be attracted towards the site until and unless a road connection and other basic facilities are ensured.
An official of ASI, J&K, said there duty was only to preserve the ancient monuments and temple. "Provide road connectivity and other facilities at the site is the sole responsibility of the state government." He added, "We have take up the matter with district administration and government a number of times. The reason of delay is best known to them."