PANAJI: The centuries-old Jain temple of Neminath in Bandora has been literally hauled back from the dead. A few crucial ‘stitches’ has made it more stable on its feet and a restorative effort will take it a little towards its old glory.
King Sripala had set up the Jain Basti here and an inscription in Kannada found in Bandora vouches for this. Today, among the ruins of only the Neminath temple survives.

Years of exposure to natural elements, especially during the four-month-long monsoon period, as also long neglect had weakened the structure.

The edifice had developed cracks and the facade had also been affected, leaving it in imminent danger of collapse. Steel rods were embedded in the masonry to bind the loose parts and grouted at various places.

“The exercise helped its structural consolidation,” assistant superintending archaeologist, directorate of archives and archaeology (DAA), Varad Sabnis said. Lime mortar was also used in the restoration work of the temple, which had earlier received attention in a Rs 10-lakh conservation effort more than a decade back.

The ongoing second phase of restoration has uncovered some unknown features — old foundations and a floor. A full-scale model of some of the lost features of the structure is being prepared based on findings during the work.

Research also involves study of old photos of the edifice. “We invite anybody who has old photographs of the Jain Basti,” an official said.