New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday visited the Kedarnath shrine in Uttarakhand and unveiled a 12-foot statue of Adi Guru Shankaracharya at the seer's rebuilt samadhi. The prime minister also laid the foundation stone of reconstruction projects worth over Rs 400 crore at the Himalayan temple.

After arriving in Kedarnath, Modi watched a brief documentary detailing the reconstruction work carried out at the Himalayan temple after the devastating deluge of 2013 and then entered the sanctum sanctorum of the shrine. He offered prayers and walked to the "Bheem Shila" behind the temple. The huge rock had rolled down the mountains during the June 2013 deluge and stopped right behind the temple and is credited for protecting it from the disaster.

While addressing the people at Kedarnath in Uttarakhand's Rudraprayag district, the prime minister said that after the 2013 floods no one thought that the redevelopment work will progress in such a manner. He also said he personally reviewed the redevelopment works at Kedarnath.

"After the 2013 destruction, people used to think if Kedarnath could be redeveloped. But a voice within me always told me that Kedarnath will be redeveloped again. I have regularly reviewed redevelopment works at Kedarnath from Delhi. I reviewed the progress of different works being carried out here through drone footage. I want to thank all 'Rawals' here for their guidance for these works."

Lauding the efforts of the people in the state, the Prime Minister said that even amid snowfall, the development works were carried out here.

"Despite extreme weather conditions in Kedarnath, these development projects have come to fruition due to the labourers working tirelessly to help me achieve this mission of restoring strength to this region. I thank the Uttarakhand government, the Chief Minister and all those who have taken responsibility for these works and development," the PM said.

The prime minister also inaugurated various re-development projects worth Rs 130 crores. These projects include Saraswati Retaining Wall Aasthapath and Ghats, Mandakini Retaining Wall Aasthapath, Tirth Purohit Houses and Garud Chatti bridge on river Mandakini.

"The new development projects will enhance the journey of devotees with improved amenities and safety measures to ensure that we are prepared for future calamities," said the Prime Minister.

Work on the Shankaracharya statue, weighing around 35 tonnes, had begun in 2019. Its unveiling was streamed live at 12 jyotirlingas, four mutts or monasteries established by the eighth-century seer, his birthplace and a number of prominent temples across the country. The prime minister sat in meditation at the foot of the statue for a while before taking a walk around Kedarpuri to review the reconstruction work carried out over the last few years.

(With Agencies Inputs)

Posted By: Talibuddin Khan