Adi Shankaracharya is known to have taken samadhi near the Kedarnath shrine in Rudraprayag district of Uttarakhand.(HT Photo)
Adi Shankaracharya is known to have taken samadhi near the Kedarnath shrine in Rudraprayag district of Uttarakhand.(HT Photo)

Uttarakhand asked to explain delay in restoration of Kedarnath Samadhi of Adi Shankaracharya

Adi Shankaracharya was an 8th-century Indian spiritual leader who consolidated the doctrine of Advaita Vedanta and worked to strengthen the Hindu religion.
Hindustan Times, Dehradun | By Neeraj Santoshi
UPDATED ON DEC 31, 2020 02:55 PM IST

Uttarakhand high court on Wednesday issued a show cause to the state government asking why contempt proceedings should not be initiated against it for non-compliance of its October 2018 order for restoration of the samadhi of Adi Shankaracharya, near Kedarnath temple, within a year.

The samadhi was damaged in the 2013 Kedarnath tragedy. The court has sought a reply from the state government within two weeks.

The matter was heard by division bench of acting chief justice Ravi Vijaykumar Malimath and justice Manoj Kumar Tiwari.

Ajay Gautam, a Delhi based activist, who appeared in person in the matter, said that in October 2018, HC had directed the state government to restore the samadhi of Adi Shankaracharya within a year.

“As the restoration of the samadhi has not been completed yet, I filed an application in the court regarding the same in November this year. Hearing the matter, the court has now issued show cause to the state government and directed it to submit its reply within two weeks in the matter,” he said

The Kerala born Adi Shankaracharya was an 8th-century Indian spiritual leader who consolidated the doctrine of Advaita Vedanta and made a significant contribution in unifying Hinduism by setting up four mathas (monastic institutions) across India.

Uttarakhand Himalayas hold much significance in the context of Adi Shankaracharya as he is believed to have taken samadhi here at Kedarnath. He also established one of the four mathas at Joshimath and installed the idol at Badrinath.

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Disposing of the PIL in October 2018, the court had ordered that “State is directed to restore the Samadhi of Adi Shankaracharya Ji positively within a period of one year.. at Kedarnath”.

It also directed the district administration to ensure that the local traditional hill architecture is taken into consideration while repairing/restoring the samadhi of Adi Shankaracharya and also to ensure that the architecture merges with the surrounding landscape.

Elaborating the importance of the Shankaracharya and his samadhi in the state, HC had noted that he retired to the Himalayas at the young age of 32 years and entered a cave near Kedarnath.

“Kedarnath is a Hindu pilgrimage site in Uttarakhand. The Samadhi of Adi Shankaracharya was built near Kedarnath temple. Samadhi was also revered by the pilgrims visiting Kedarnath. Samadhi of Adi Shankaracharya Ji was swept away in the Kedarnath tragedy in the month of June, 2013. Thereafter, it has not been repaired. It is in these circumstances that the present writ petition has been filed”, the order had observed.

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