Puri: The Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) has successfully completed laser scanning of the Srimandir Ratna Bhandar, the treasury of the famed Jagannath Temple in Puri, Odisha. The scanning process, which began on Tuesday, involved a team of 15 ASI experts, including architects and surveillance and photography specialists.
The laser scanning focused on 45 points along the north side and upper portion of the Ratna Bhandar. Superintendent Archaeologist DB Garnaik explained that the captured images will be processed by ASI technicians using specialized software to create a detailed 3D model of the structure. This model will enable engineers and conservators to identify any cracks or other damage that may require repair.
Garnaik also indicated that the ASI may seek permission to scan the inner Ratna Bhandar if cracks are detected on the outer walls. He stated that the ASI has informed the Shree Jagannath Temple Administration (SJTA) about the completion of the scanning and discussed ways to expedite the scanning of the Nata Mandap, another important structure within the temple complex.
In response to concerns about damaged idols within the temple, ASI official Chittaranjan Das assured that damaged idols would be repaired rather than replaced. He explained that the ASI lacked skilled artisans during the conservation of the Konark Sun Temple, leading to the replacement of damaged idols with stone slabs. However, the ASI now has a team of skilled artisans who can restore damaged idols at Srimandir.