Mangalagiri

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Letter to C.M. to Save Mangalagiri Gali Gopuram

Date: 25-11-2010
To
Sri Nallari Kiran Kumar Reddy Garu,
S/O Late Sri Nallari Amaranadha Reddy,
Honourable Chief Minister,
Govt.Of Andhra Pradesh Secretariat,
Hyderabad.

Most Highly Respected Sir,

We hereby heartly congratulate you and wishing all the best
(We always cooperate and coordinate with you for the welfare of the state)

Sub:-
Complaint against the decision of Endowment Department / Government of A.P. for unnecessarily / unmindfully proposing to demolish, fell, remove and reconstruct 'Maha Gali Gopuram / Thoorupu Raja Gopuram (Tower on East side) of 'Sri Lakshmi Narasimha Swamy Temple' Mangalagiri, Guntur Dist. - Reg.


Ref:-
  1. Inspection Report of the Technical Committee, about the said Gali Gopuram, dt. 19/20-06-2010.

  2. News flashed in different daily Telugu / English News papers for the last a few months till date.

I. We the authorized signatories of a Socio Legal Service Forum 'aasaraa' and other organizations having received reliable information through the news published in different news papers under reference 2nd cited about the unnecessary / unmindful decision of the Endowment Department / Government of Andhra Pradesh to demolish, fell, remove and reconstruct 'Maha Gali Gopuram / Thoorupu Raja Gopuram' (Towner on East side) of 'Sri Lakshmi Narasimha Swamy Temple' Mangalagiri, Guntur District, are most respectfully submitting / lodging the following.

HUMBLE REPRESENTATION / COMPLAINT


1. We are astonished like anything to know about the proposal / decision of Endowment Department / Government of Andhra Pradesh for removal and reconstruction of the said Gali Gopuram. We being the Hindus by birth, faith and practice are worrying like very much about the said decision and many of the residents of that locality are also feeling like that and approached us to take some legal action preventing the endowment department from removing and reconstructing the said Gali Gopuram. So, we got issued statutory notice to all the concerned. We are submitting this humble representation with a fond hope that you will personally interfere in the matter and use your good offices and prevent the endowment department / Govt. of A.P. from implementing its above decision.

2. We submit that our Andhra Pradesh Charitable & Hindu Religious Institutions and Endowment Department (Hereinafter called as 'Endowment Department') is aware that Sri Lakshmi Narasimha Swamy Temple, Mangalagiri (Hereinafter called as the 'Temple') is one of three most well-known Narasimha Shrines in Andhra Pradesh and one of the Eight important Mahakshetrams (Sacred places) in India. There are three Narasimha Swamy Temples in Mangalagiri, one is at the foot of the Hill known as 'Sri Lakshmi Narasimha Swamy Temple'; another is on the Middle platform portion of the Hill known as 'Sri Panakala Narasimha Swamy Temple' and the third is at the top of the Hill known as 'Sri Gandala Narasimha Swamy Temple'. The temple at foot is famous for its highest Gali Gopuram; the temple at Middle of the Hill is famous for consumption of Jaggery water and the temple at the top of the Hill is famous for its uninterrupted burning of light. Because of the said temples with the said Gali Gopuram, the Mangalagiri has become one of the most sacred places not only for Hindus but also to the persons who like the architecture and historical monuments in Andhra Pradesh.

3. We further submit that as per record of the Archaeological survey of India and Epigraphia Indica (published under the authority of the Government of India as a supplement to the 'Indian Antiquary' during the year 1900-01), the said Gali Gopuram is consisting of Eleven stories in 153 feet height, 49 feet in width with beautiful architecture and ornamental uniform desings on outer surface of the said Gali Gopuram. It is said that Vijayanagara Kings constructed three storeys/floors and Sri Raja Vasireddy Venkatadri Naidu has constructed the other eight storeys/floors of the said Gali Gopuram during the year 1807 to 1809. It is very rare to find out towers which have less width and more height like this Gali Gopuram in India. The said Gali Gopuram is the main attraction for the pilgrims/travelers to visit Mangalagiri. Not only Hindus but also several other sects of people all over India more particularly in Andhra Pradesh have very much mentally and sentimentally, religiously and spiritually attached to the said Gali Gopuram and they used to remember / recollect the said marvelous, solid aweinspiring construction when they think about Mangalagiri. The beauty, elegant look and workmanship of the said Gopuram are unforgettable and appreciatable like anything at all times. The said Gali Gopuram has become a model for many other Gopurams in South India and the modern temples are following the construction of the like Gopurams, is a classical example for the intellectual engineering of our ancestors. We feel proud for living in the area, where such a great monument/construction is situated. We cannot imagine and tolerate about the decision taken for demolition of the said Gali Gopuram. Moreover, removal and reconstruction of Gali Gopuram is not auspicious to the residents of Andhra Pradesh particularly Mangalagiri, Guntur District, and if it is demolished and removed some unforeseen bad events may occur as per the Hindu Sastras/Mythology. Sri Konijeti Rosaiah within a week after hastily, unnecessarily and unmindfully signing for demolition of the said Gali Gopuram has resigned within one week and in consequence the Endowment Minister Sri Gade Venkata Reddy lost his Ministry. This might be due to their above decision and so their proceedings shall be reviewed on merits.

4. We also submit that on enquiry we came to know that after collapse of Gopuram of 'Sri Kalahasthi Temple' which is due to pure negligence of the endowment department, the endowment department have constituted a Technical Committee to inspect the Mangalagiri Gali Gopuram etc. The said Committee has hurriedly without thorough scientific investigation and modern technical examination through sophisticated engineering instruments and other devices like 3-D scanner etc. and conducting different tests including teh Carbon Test, submitted its Inspection REport under reference first cited. The members of the said Technical Committee in its report has mentioned several remedial measures to protect and prevent further damage to the Gopuram and preserve the same. But, the said Technical Committee did not any where in its report mentioned about the removal and reconstruction of the said Gali Gopuram and also not mentioned the technical reasons for giving such conclusions in its report.

5. We regret to inform you that the said inspection report is not true technical and final as the members of the said committee have not taken much importance in their investigation and not conducted the necessary examinations and scanning of the said Gali Gopuram with modern devices, but simply on the basis of the external physical features of the said Gali Gopuram catching the naked eye gave their report. So, the thorough investigations, examinations and scanning of Gopuram both externally and internally and also the present strength and required strength to withstand the said Gali Gopuram should be identified and described. We sincerely opine that the members of the said committee are not diligent and vigilant in preparing their report under reference first cited and moreover negligent and if not they would have used the latest devices completely before preparing such inspection report. It seems that the members of the said committee have not taken much interest in their job, having not known/mindful about the sancitity and historical importance of the said Gopuram and necessity to keep the same intact.

6. We further submit that when the said committee in its inspection report never said that the said Gali Gopuram is in such a bad dilapidated condition and it has to be removed immediately, what made the endowment department and state government to issue orders for demolition and reconstruction of the said Gali Gopuram without implementing the remedial measures mentioned in the said report except to meet their selfish ends. Before taking such a decision, the Government did not think over about the remedial measures mentioned in the report and the reasons for over looking them. If the Department/Government is not confident about the remedial measures mentioned in the report, it would have taken second opinion from any competent persons/authorities.

7. We came to know through the news flashed under reference second cited that the Government is propising to get the said Gali Gopuram removed and reconstructed with a sum of 10.5 crore of rupees, while it estimated the cost of the reconstruction of Sri Kalahasthi Gali Gopuram at 35 crore of rupees. In fact, Sri Kalahasthi Gopuram is lesser in height when compared with Mangalagiri Gali Gopuram and so it is ridicules for the department to say 10.5 crore of rupees is sufficient for reconstruction of Mangalagiri Gali Gopuram when actually Rs.40 crore of rupees is required.

8. We regret to inform you that the endowment department and its employees are very careless, reckless and negligent in protecting and preserving Historical Monuments of Temples. If, a minimum care is taken, the said Mangalagiri Gali Gopuram will not be in the present condition and Sri Kalahasthi Gali Gopuram would not have been collapsed. In the year 2004 or so, the endowment department has spent about 20 lakh rupees for plastering, colouring and pasting small dolls fo different deities on outer surface of the said Gali Gopuram without obtaining any technical sanction for the purpose of meeting their selfish ends. When the said Technical Committee suggested some remedies to effect repairs and upkeep the said Gali Gopuram, the Endowment department without implementing those remedial measures mentioned in the inspection report under reference first cited, has hastily taken the decision of demolition and reconstruction of Gali Gopuram to meet its selfish ends only.

9. We strongly believe that there is a conspiracy among the concerned employees of the temple/department, elected peoples representatives and some of teh Government officials in taking such a hasty decision and apprehend that there would be some interest of some of them in taking the said decision and if not there is no urgency for demolition and reconstruction of the said Gali Gopuram at this stage, when there are so many public works immediately attended too.

10. We think that, if there is immediate apprehension of collapse of Gopuram after confirming through thorough different kinds of tests, 3-D scanning etc. The department can reduce Head Weight of Gopuram by removing a few of upper stories of the said Gopuram and retain the remaining stories instead of completely removing and reconstructing the said Gopuram. The said decision of the Government is injuring the feelings of the Hindus and lovers of the historical monuments. Several experts are opining that if such immediate danger of collapse of the said Gopuram is scientifically found correct, it will be wise for removing some of the upper stories of the said Gopuram instead of removing and reconstruction of the entire Gali Gopuram.

II. We under the above stated circumstances hereby most respectfully beg to submit you (a) to use your good offices for preventing the hectic efforts of the Endowment Department / Government of Andhra Pradesh to demolish, fell, remove and reconstruct the said Gali Gopuram; (b) to withdraw/revoke/cancel the decision/proceedings of the endowment department/Government for removal and reconstruction of the said Gali Gopuram; (c) to conduct all necessary tests like carbon test and other investigations like 3-D scanning etc. (d) to know the true factual condition / strength and stability of the said Gali Gopuram both externally and internally; (e) to take expert / senior technical persons opinion; (f) to take services of different social service organizations like us and if finally it is proved that the said Gopuram is in such a dangerous condition to order for removal of the some of the upper stories/floors and retain the remaining stories/floors by effecting necessary repairs as early as possible (g) to keep the demolition decision of the said Gali Gopuram atleast in abeyance till final technical report and technical opinions are obtained and (h) to reply to this humble representation as early as possible in the interest of justice and for which act of your kindness we will be ever thankful and grateful to you.

Be Pleased to Consider

Thanking you, Sir.

Yours Faithfully,

1. for Aasaraa, Guntur
(A Socio Legal Service Forum)

(Aregakuti Sanjeeva Reddy)

(Avuthu Rama Devi)
Founders of Aasaraa

(Jagarlamudi Mallikarjuna Rao)
Chairman, Advisory Board, Aasaraa

2. for Gunturu Poura Sabha, Guntur
(a Society for welfare of Gunturians)

(Chunduru Venu Kishore Babu)
Coordinator of Poura Sabha)

3. for Aasaraa Associates, Guntur
(A Chamber of Law & Justice)

(R.V.A.Syam Prasad)
Member Advocate

4. for Tarang, Guntur
(A room for legal Knowledge)

Coordinator of Tarang

5. for Rural India Service Team, Guntur
(A Road for Welfare of Farmers)

(Aregakuti Ram Mohan Reddy)
Coordinator of RIST

Copy to:

Sri E.S.L.Narasimham, I.P.S., (Retired)
Honourable Governor of Andhra Pradesh,
Raj Bhavan, Somajiguda, Hyderabad.

Sri Rayapati Sambasiva Rao,
Member of Parliament,
1/1, Chandramouli Nagar,
Guntur - 7,
Guntur District, A.P.

Janab Jaji Mohammed Jani,
Vice Chairman of A.P.Legislative Council,
Govt. of Andhra Pradesh,
Sangadigunta,
Guntur - 522001.

Sri K.S.Lakshmana Rao,
Member of Legislative Council,
Syamala Nagar,
Guntur - 522004,
Andhra Pradesh.

Smt. Kandru Kamala,
Member of Legislative Assembly,
Old Mangalagiri,
Mangalagir,
Guntur District,
Andhra Pradesh.

Sri Modugula Venugopala Reddy, M.A., B.L.,
Member of Parliament,
(Narasaraopet Constituency),
Golden Towers,
Jute Mill Road,
Guntur.

The Commissioner,
Endowments Department,
Dharmika Bhavan,
Tilak Road,
Boggula Gunta,
Abids,
Hyderabad - 500001.

Dharmika Parishat,
Hyderabad
rep.by its Secretary,
Dharmika Bhavan,
Tilak Road,
Boggula GUnta,
Abids,
Hyderabad - 500001.

The Chief Secretary,
Govt.of A.P.,
Secretariat,
Hyderabad.

The State of A.P.,
rep by its Prinicpal Secretary,
Revenue (Endowment) Department,
Secretariat,
Hyderabad.

The State of Andhra Pradesh,
rep by its District Collector,
Collectorate,
Guntur - 522004,
Andhra Pradesh.

The Deputy Commissioner,
Endowmenets Department,
Naaz Center,
Kothapet,
Guntur - 522001.
Andhra Pradesh.

Sri Lakshmi Narasimha Swamy Temple,
Mangalagiri,
rep by its Executive Officer,
Main Road,
Mangalagiri.

Respected Secretary to the Chief Minister,
Samatha Block,
A.P.Secretariat,
Hyderabad,
Andhra Pradesh.

The Commissioner/Director General (Vig & Enft.) &
E.O. Prinicpal Secretary to Govt. GAD Vigilance and Enforcement Dept.,
Government of A.P.,
Secretariat,
Hyderabad.

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