‘Indian company gives up Angkor replica plan’

Phnom Penh, Sep 8 (IANS) The Indian government has advised a private trust to give up its plan to build a near-replica of Cambodia’s famed Angkor Wat temple, Cambodian foreign ministry spokesman Chum Sounry said on Tuesday.

Indian ambassador to Cambodia Naveen Srivastava made the remarks while paying a courtesy call on Cambodian deputy prime minister Hor Namhong, Xinhua reported the spokesman as saying.

“The ambassador said the government has advised the private company to change the style and structure (in the original blueprint) in order to avoid copying from the Angkor Wat temple,” the spokesman said.

India has planned to invite Cambodia to check the revised blueprint when it is completed.

The ambassador assured that the government would not allow the plan to be implemented as it could affect ties between the two countries.

Hor Namhong renewed the ambassador’s call on the Mahavir Mandir, a Hindu trust based in Bihar, to stop the plan to construct the replica of Angkor.

Hor Namhong said the Angkor Wat temple is the “heart and soul of the Cambodian people.”

Mahavir Mandir, after Combodia’s protest in June, delayed its plan to construct a near-replica of the world famous Angkor Wat temple in India’s Bihar state.

Located in Cambodia’s Siem Reap province, the temple is Cambodia’s most popular tourist destination.

The 12th century site attracted 1.4 million foreign tourists in the first eight months of 2015, earning $39.8 million from ticket sales.

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