ayodhya stone carvers

Preparation of stone blocks and columns for the construction of proposed Ram temple in Ayodhya. (IANS file photo)

AYODHYA — For the first time in the past 29 years, stone carving for the Ram temple at Karsevakpuram here has been stopped.

The carving of stones has been continuing without a break since 1990 at the workshop in Karsevakpuram.

VHP spokesman Sharad Sharma said Nov. 7 that the decision to stop carving of stones has been taken by the Ram Janambhoomi Nyas.

"The Nyas has decided to stop all work at the workshop. It has decided to wait for the Supreme Court's verdict. Thereafter, it will take a decision on resuming the work," he said.

"The Ram Janambhoomi Nyas will now decide when carving work will re-start," he said.

The majority of artisans working at Karsevakpuram have returned to their home in Gujarat.

The workshop, however, is attracting a large number of visitors who are curious to see the piles of carved stone pillars, ceiling slabs, floor slabs and slabs for steps, all in red stone, for the proposed temple, which will not have any iron work.

Many devotees are seen clicking selfies and touching the slabs in reverence.

According to the VHP, nearly 1.25 lakh cubic feet of stone has already been carved which means that the work for one floor of the temple is ready.

The VHP desk at Karsevakpuram is still accepting subscriptions for building the temple.

Meanwhile, several saints are disappointing at the work being discontinued. They feel that with the Supreme Court verdict barely a few days away, work should have been intensified.

The distance between the workshop and the proposed temple site is about 3 kilometers. The workshop has two giant stone cutters under a huge shed that is the workplace for the stone-carvers.

In the middle of the workshop is a wooden model of the proposed temple.

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