AHMEDABAD: At 76, Chandrakant Sompura is a man rejuvenated. Sompura’s decades-old project may now be completed in the next couple of years, adding one more feather to the laurels of his architect lineage, as the Supreme court on Saturday cleared the way for the construction of a Ram temple in Ayodhya.
Back in 1989, it was the then VHP supremo Ashok Singhal who asked Sompura to design the temple and took him to Ayodhya. He went on to create the grand design and later showed it to the saints during the Allahabad Kumbh in early 1990s to get their approval. But the work on ground had to wait for almost three decades to start. “It will take another six months to start now that the trust has to be formed and the process restarted,” said Sompura. “Once started, this shall be over within two-and-a-half years.”
For the record, his father, Prabhakar Sompura, was the architect of the Somnath Temple in Gujarat and the temple in Mathura, the mythological birthplace of Lord Krishna. Chandrakant Sompura, himself, has designed more than 100 temples, including the Swami Narayan Temple in Gandhinagar, Ambaji Temple in Palanpur and several others.
The proposed temple in Ayodhya has been designed in the Nagara style, largely prevalent in the western part of the country, said his son, Ashish Sompura. “This temple will be one of the very few temples in the country with an octagonal sanctum sanctorum,” he told ET. The ground floor of the two-storied temple would house Ram Lalla, the child form of the deity, while the first floor will have the Ram darbar, complete with the statues of Ram, Sita, Lakshman and Hanuman. Explaining the space allocation plan of the temple, Ashish Sompura said the temple would first have a Chowki or a courtyard, followed by a Nritya Mandap or an open enclosure and a Gudha Mandap or a close enclosure ahead of the sanctum sanctorum.
The main structure will be 270 feet long, 145 feet wide and 141 feet high with 251 pillars, he said adding the sandstones for this would be from Bansi Paharpur in Rajasthan’s Bharatpur district. Stones from Bansi Paharpur were also used in Somnath as well as the Akshardham temples.
Source: Economic Times