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Tuesday, November 30, 2021

Repairs at Siddhivinayak Temple’s shikhar; lotus petals to get gold-plated covers

The repair work is being undertaken to replace parts of the cladding on the shikar as well as some of the marble petals that have developed cracks, and the corroded holders meant to keep the petals in place.

Written by Yogesh Naik | Mumbai |
Updated: November 4, 2021 6:54:04 am
The Siddhivinayak temple in Mumbai. (Express Photo: Ganesh Shirsekar)

The Siddhivinayak Temple Trust is carrying out repairs worth of Rs 5 crore in the shikhar (tower) of the temple that rises over the complex. As part of these repairs, the trust has approved gold plated covers for the marble lotus petals on the shikhar. It will crowd-source the fund needed for this from devotees.

The repair work is being undertaken to replace parts of the cladding on the shikar as well as some of the marble petals that have developed cracks, and the corroded holders meant to keep the petals in place.

Trust chairperson Aadesh Bandekar said, “We are replacing the petals on the top of the temple, as they have become old and are falling off. This process will take a year more. After the work is complete, we will have gold plated covers for the petals and will appeal to devotees to donate for this. This will add to the beauty of the temple.”

“Till recently, we had only one leaf with a cover made of gold plated metal, which also had alloys. Many devotees want to donate,” he added.

Bandekar said the trust was consulting jewellers and senior technicians about the repairs and the gold plating work. “The temple is close to the sea, we have to ensure that the plating lasts and does not get affected by salty wind,” he added.

He said that the trust is yet to estimate how much gold will be required for the gold plated cover for leaves.

Chetan Raikar, the architect replacing the petals, said, “There are 80 petals – small and big. These petals are made of white Makarana marble and we are replacing the ones that are damaged. The cantilever brackets are being treated with anti-corrosion material. Besides, nearly 30 per cent of the external cladding made with pink marble, which has fallen off or cracked, is also being replaced.’’

Architect Shashi Prabhu, who is being consulted on the project, said once these repairs are carried out, the temple – which is more than 200 years old and was last renovated in 1993 – will not require major maintenance for the next 25 years.

The trust now operates under the supervision of the state government’s law and judiciary department.

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