Bhubaneswar: Union minister for steel & petroleum Dharmendra Pardhan has shot off a letter to the union culture and tourism minister Prahlad Singh Patel urging him for restoration of the 500 year old Odisha temple submerged under Mahanadi water.

He has requested the culture minister to direct the Archaeological Survey of India for restoring and relocating the Lord Gopinath Temple that re-emerged in the middle of Mahanadi River near Baideswar in Padmavati village in Nayagarh district recently.

In a letter to the Culture and Tourism Minister on Wednesday, Pradhan said, “I understand that the non-profit organization Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage (INTACH) has examined the temple and deemed it to be of major historic significance and in a good state of preservation.”

Pradhan has stated hat the 55 to 60 feet submerged temple dates back to the late 15th or early 16th century. It is theorized that the temple was submerged in 1933 following floods in the region”.

Pradhan urged the personal intervention of culture and tourism minister in directing officials of the ASI for undertaking restoration and relocation of Gopinath temple to a suitable site.

In fact, the India Whsipers first carried the report about the INTACH’s discovery of the temple.

A survey team of INTACH had located the temple in Mahanadi waters a few days back. The national heritage watchdog had launched a one-of-its-kind project on the Documentation of the Heritage of the Mahanadi Valley under the supervision of historian Anil Dhir and the discovery of Gopinath Temple is also a part of the project.