What has irked the teerth purohits or the pilgrimage priests is that the gold plating using big drilling machines has damaged the walls.
Dehradun: The work to gold-plate the interior walls of the sanctum sanctorum of the Kedarnath Temple has now faced opposition from a section of priests who said the move amounts to tampering with the centuries-old tradition.
What has irked the teerth purohits or the pilgrimage priests is that the gold plating using big drilling machines has damaged the walls. Till now, the walls were covered with silver plates which were removed.
The move to gold plate was taken up after a Kedarnath devotee from Maharashtra volunteered to make an offering of gold for the purpose. His proposal was accepted by the Badrinath-Kedarnath Temple Committee and later, the state government gave permission.
However, not all priests are in opposition, some are happy that the Kedarnath temple walls are being gold plated. A senior priest at the temple, Shrinivas Posti, who was a former president of the Kedar Sabha Mahesh Bagwadi told the media that the temple is a major centre of Sanatan faith and gold plating of its walls is in keeping with the Hindu beliefs and traditions.
President of the Badrinath-Kedarnath Temple Committee Ajendra Ajay said opposition to the gold plating of the temple walls is not justified as it is being done in accordance with the traditions without tampering with the original structure. “Renovation and beautification of the temple from time to time is a normal practice. A handful of priests may oppose it but their representative bodies never opposed it. Decades ago the temple ceiling used to be made of grass and twigs. As the times changed it began to be made of stones and later of copper sheets,” he said.
Smelling politics in the move to oppose the gold plating of the Kedarnath temple’s interior walls, the committee president said it is an “opposition propaganda”. “Hindu temples all over the country are symbols of grandeur. Decorating Hindu deities with gold and jewellery has been part of our traditions. I see nothing wrong in covering the temple walls with gold plates,” Ajay said.