Ancient temple under renovation by ASI

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Pudukkottai,Tamil Nadu, Apr 28: The Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) is now undertaking renovation work on an ancient temple dating back to ninth century AD at the sleepy village of Keezha Dhaaniyam near Ponnamaravathy in this district.

ASI sources told UNI that renovation work was proceeding in full swing and was expected to be completed in the next few weeks.

The temple built during the reign of Ko Ilango Mutharaiyar was dedicated to Lord Sri Uthamadhaneeswarar. The temple walls had a good number of inscriptions.

The temple stood as testimony to the importance of Ko Ilango Mutharaiyar's rule which lasted for over 15 years, during which time another temple was built at Keeranur in the same district, also dedicated to Sri Uthmadhaneeswarar.

Every stone and pillar was carefully removed and numbered for its re-alignment in the same order. Only conventional materials including lime, gall-nut, ('kadukkai') and jaggery were used.

The popular form of 'all-stone and all-square' style is the characteristic feature of the architecture as the structure is in a perfect square shape right from the base (Ubanam) up to its top.

The ASI has retained the original structure intact. The 'mandapam' and a shrine for Sri Ambal were other additions made during the later period.

The architecture of the 'mandapam' testified to the style of 12th century AD. The shrine for Sri Ambal was added during the later Pandya era, the sources added.

UNI

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