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Quelossim villagers protest against temple’s PCC plinth demolition

Vasco: Tension prevailed in Quelossim village on Monday after several villagers gathered at the ruins of Shree Shantadurga temple to protest against the demolition of PCC plinth by the officials of Shree Shantadurga Sausthan, Kawale Ponda.As news spread like wildfire among the locals, a group of locals and other devotees gathered at the site and staged a demonstration demanding explanation as to why demolition was being carried out without informing the locals. They said “If the construction done by them is illegal then they should demolish all other constructions done at the site.”As more people joined the protesters, a strong posse of police rushed to the site to control the law and order situation. According to the locals though the Archives and Archaeology department has declared the site as protected the same was left neglected. They said that since the old Shantadurga temple site in Quelossim village has religious importance, the local devotees who have been taking care of the site since last several decades recently constructed PCC plinth in front of the ruins of Shree Shantadurga temple so that devotees should not face any undue hardships while performing religious rituals.“We are fully aware that the site is a state protected monument and is in the possession of the Shree Shantadurga Saunsthan Committee, Kavale. We (locals) have been performing rituals and are also taking care of other maintenance of the site since last several decades. Earlier the site had no shade so we constructed a shade over the temple. All this while, no one raised any objection but today they suddenly came with JCB and started demolishing the plinth, without giving any prior intimation to us,” said Tanuja Naik, a local devotee from Quelossim. [H]

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