Maha to refurbish centuries-old 8 major temples

Reiterating his commitment to Hindutva, Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Monday gave green signal to refurbish eight old and functional temples — a majority of them dating back to several centuries, dotting the state.

These are — Dhutpapeshwar Temple in Ratnagiri, Kopeshwar Temple of Kolhapur, Ekviradevi Temple in Pune, Gondeshwar Temple of Nashik, Khandoba Temple in Aurangabad, Purushottam Bhagwan Temple of Beed, Anandeshwar Temple in Amravati and Markanda Mahadev Temple of Gadchiroli.

While the Dhutpapeshwar Temple is around 1,000 years old, Kopeshwar Temple is 800 years, Ekvira Devi Temple – which is also the family deity of the Thackerays who regularly go to pray there – was built during the time of the Pandavas, and the Gondeshwar Temple is 900 years aged.

Khandoba Temple revered equally by Muslims is around 9 centuries old, Purushottam Bhagwan Temple is some 15 centuries old and the only one of its kind in the state, the Anandeshwar Temple is around 8 centuries old and the Markanda Mahadev Temple dates back to many centuries.

Presiding over a meeting of the Cultural Affairs Department, the Chief Minister directed that the administrative approval for giving a face-lift to these 8 temples would be accorded this week to enable the work start without hindrance.

While the original form and structure of each ancient temple shall be retained, new infrastructure, aesthetics and amenities shall be created to attract more pilgrims and tourists from all over the state and other parts of India, said officials.

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