Another hurdle regarding the corridor for the famous Banke Bihari temple in Mathura has been removed. On Monday, Allahabad High Court has given green signal to the UP government’s plan to build a corridor for the convenience of devotees. The bench of High Court Chief Justice Pritinkar Diwakar and Justice Ashutosh Srivastava has passed the order after hearing the PIL filed by Anand Sharma and another person from Mathura.
Earlier, the state government had presented the plan related to the development of the corridor before the court. The UP government had said that about five acres of land would be acquired around the temple to facilitate the devotees for darshan and worship. According to the plan, there will be no interference of any kind in the worship, worship or adornment performed by the Goswamis. Whatever rights they have, they will continue to use them. The government will also create facilities like parking area and will also bear its expenses.
‘The court left the responsibility on the state government’
After hearing the parties concerned, the High Court said, the state government should proceed with the schemes submitted to this court and their implementation. The court considers it appropriate and necessary in the interest of justice. We leave it open to the state government. To implement the scheme, take whatever steps you deem appropriate after consultation with technical experts of the area.
‘Government can take appropriate action on encroachment’
On the issue of encroachment around the temple premises, the court said, the state government is also free to take appropriate steps to remove encroachment on the access roads (lanes) to the temple. The court said, after the implementation of the scheme, the State Government is expected to ensure that no further obstruction/encroachment is allowed on the access roads to the temple.
‘There should not be any hindrance in the darshan of the devotees’
On the issue of problems faced by the devotees during the preparation of the corridor, the court said, we make it clear that the darshan of the devotees will not be hindered in any way except in the implementation of the plan. Appropriate alternative arrangements will be made. The present management as well as all the stakeholders are directed to ensure that the darshan of the devotees is not restricted in any way and by anyone. District officials have also been asked to ensure strict compliance with the instructions and any violation should be reported to the court, the order said.
‘Questions raised on the responsibility of the administration in the petition’
It was said in the PIL that due to the huge crowd of devotees, there is a law and order problem. Several FIRs have been registered for theft, robbery and damage to property. The petition also mentioned cases of death of devotees due to huge crowd. According to the petitioner, the local administration is obliged to ensure proper pedestrian corridors to the temple, but it has completely failed in the obligation. Despite several accidents, no action has been taken by the district administration or the state government. The High Court has fixed the next date of hearing on the PIL as 31 January 2024.
‘The residents of Kunj Gali had protested’
Earlier, it was said on behalf of the Sibayats (chief priests) of the temple that if the government is not using the money offered to the Lord by the devotees or is not interfering in the functioning and management of the temple then the corridors for the Banke Bihari temple. We have no objection to the construction. At the same time, in the application on behalf of the residents of Kunj Gali, it was said that the construction of the corridor will destroy the character and importance of Kunj Gali, which cannot be allowed. Earlier, it was also said on behalf of Sibayat that this PIL itself is not worthy of hearing. Banke Bihari Temple is a private temple. Therefore the state government has no right to interfere in its functioning.
‘Last year two devotees lost their lives in Bhadgad’
The Additional Advocate General, appearing for the state government, had submitted before the court that the present PIL has been filed with a prayer for a comprehensive plan to control the huge crowd of public and with regard to the welfare of the pilgrims visiting there. The proposal for construction of the corridor was brought after the death of two devotees in a stampede at the Banke Bihari temple during Janmashtami celebrations last year. Earlier during the hearing, it was also alleged on behalf of Sibayat that on the pretext of construction of the corridor, the government wanted to change the position and structure of the two temples of Vrindavan and Kunj Gali. It was also said that there are other ancient temples around the Banke Bihari temple which the UP government is going to demolish.
How will the corridor of Banke Bihari Temple be?
Like the Kashi Vishwanath Corridor of Varanasi, there are preparations to build a corridor in the Banke Bihari Temple in Mathura. The survey work regarding the corridor has been completed. This entire corridor will be built in five acres. In August last year, UP Minister Lakshmi Narayan Chaudhary had said that this corridor will connect the temple and Yamuna river. This will be exactly like Kashi Vishwanath Corridor. Kashi Vishwanath Corridor is connected to the temple and river Ganga. There will be three routes in the corridor, through which the temple can be reached. This entire corridor will be two storeyed.
These will be three ways
According to the proposed plan, there will be three ways to reach the temple from the corridor. The first route will be through Jugal Ghat. The second route will be from Vidyapeeth intersection and the third from Jadaun parking.
The road that will be built from Jugal Ghat will be 25 meters wide. At the same time, the road at Vidyapeeth intersection will be 7 meters wide and the road at Jadaun parking will be 15 meters wide. The temple can be reached through these three routes.
What else will be special?
– The corridor of Banke Bihari Temple will be two storeyed. As the devotees move forward in the corridor, they will start seeing the temple.
There will also be many facilities for the devotees in the corridor, including luggage storage, shoe storage, toiletry and drinking water facilities. There will also be medical and child care facilities.
– Parikrama Marg will also be built in this corridor. Its upper part will be of 11 thousand 600 square meters, while the lower part will be of 11 thousand 300 square meters.
Along with the Banke Bihari temple, devotees will also be able to visit four more ancient temples in the proposed corridor. These also include Madan Mohan Temple and Radha Vallabh Temple. Both of these are ancient temples.
How much will be the acquisition?
– Banke Bihari Mandir Corridor will be built in an area of five acres. The roads leading to the corridor will also be widened.
– 321 buildings and properties coming in the way of the corridor will be acquired. A compensation of Rs 200 crore is proposed for this.
What will be the benefit of this?
The temple and Yamuna river will be connected through this corridor. After taking a dip in Yamuna, devotees will be able to reach the temple directly through the corridor.
– UP Government Minister Lakshmi Narayan Choudhary had said in August last year that at present only about 800 devotees are able to visit the temple at a time, but after the corridor is built, five thousand devotees will be able to visit here.
Where is Banke Bihari Temple?
– Banke Bihari Temple is situated on Raman Reti in Vrindavan Dham of Mathura district of UP. This is one of the ancient and famous temples of India.
– Banke Bihari is a form of Lord Krishna which is shown in this temple. It is believed that sins are destroyed just by coming to this holy land.
– Banke Bihari Temple in Vrindavan Dham was built by Swami Haridas in 1864. Swami Haridas was a great devotee of Shri Krishna. It is believed that the idol of Shri Krishna installed in this temple has appeared himself.
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