A Mumbai-based devotee of lord Jagannath has donated 2,500 kg silver for the plating of the wooden doors of 12th century temple in Puri. A committee of 17 members from the temple administration has been formed to approve the design of the silver-cladding work. The committee will meet on October 27 to plan the work.

“The gates of Kaalahaat dwar, Jaya-Vijay dwar, Beharana dwar, Satpahach dwar, West Bhog Mandap dwar, Narasingh Temple dwar, Bimala Temple dwar and Mahalakshmi Temple dwar will be clad with silver sheets made out of over 2,500 kg silver donated by a Mumbai-based devotee. The existing doors were worn out and will be replaced with the ones made from Burma Teakwood imported from Malaysia. The devotee is also donating the wood needed for the doors,” Temple Administrator (Development) Ajay Jena said as quoted by Hindustan Times.

The worth of the silver has been estimated Rs 15.32 crore. The precious metal will be protected in a secure room until the plating work is complete. Jay Bijay dwar, which is the main entrance to the sanctum sanctorum, will be silver-plated in the first stage along with Beherana dwar and Kaalahaat dwar. While Beharana dwara is the exit door for the devotees, Kaalahaata dwara is the door of the sanctum sanctorum.

The wooden doors have been damaged over the years and the servitors used to struggle a lot to lock them.

Since March, the famous lord Jagannath temple is closed amid the coronavirus scare. More than 400 servitors of the temple had tested positive for the deadly COVID-19.