The Uttarakhand government on Wednesday announced that construction of three meditation caves in Kedarnath area has been completed and they would be handed over to Garhwal Mandal Vikas Nigam (GMVN) by November 11.
This decision was announced during a review meeting of Kedarnath and Badrinath development and reconstruction works held under the chairmanship of chief secretary Om Prakash on Wednesday, officials said.
The decision to construct meditation caves in the Kedarnath area was taken following the popularity of the first meditation cave that was opened during Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit in May last year.
Modi had visited Rudra meditation cave in Kedarnath and spent a day meditating at the cave, nearly a kilometre from the Kedarnath shrine. Following the PM’s visit, many people from across the country booked the cave for meditation.
Last year, Uttarakhand recorded the highest ever annual tourist traffic to Char Dham of over 32 lakh during the six months of the yatra season.
“Prime Minister Modi, after visiting Kedarnath and Badrinath shrines, gave the message of clean and safe Char Dham Yatra, which brought a large number of pilgrims here,” chief minister Trivendra Singh Rawat said in a tweet.
Modi has been keenly following the progress of the development works and reconstruction works in Kedarnath and Badrinath areas. In June and July this year, he reviewed the progress through video-conferencing.
During the review meeting in June, Modi had asked the state government to make a masterplan for the Badrinath Dham for the next 100 years. In September masterplan for Badrinath shrine was presented to him through video-conferencing by the chief minister. The PM was apprised that Badrinath masterplan would be implemented in an area of around 85 hectares and care had been taken to prepare it keeping in mind the hilly terrain of the area.
Against this backdrop, the state government is trying its best to complete the development and reconstruction works at the earliest.
During the review meeting on Wednesday, secretary public works department (PWD) RK Sudhanshu said that heavy equipment has been airlifted to Kedarnath area which will be reassembled there by November 17. He also said the construction of three meditation caves has been completed.
Chief secretary Om Prakash said the management of the three meditation caves would be handed over to GMVN by November 11.
The chief secretary also directed officials that all development and reconstruction works in Badrinath-Kedarnath area be completed in time and special emphasis be laid on the quality of the work. He also said that the construction of 50 prefabricated shops near Kedarnath helipad had been completed.
He also directed the officials to start a survey at the earliest for the development works to be taken up at Badrinath, and said a time frame should be set for it.
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