A gold merchant named Gaanasravan from Bengaluru has offered to donate a whopping ₹700 crores to the famous Chottanikkara temple in Kochi in Kerala, reported The New Indian Express. He had visited the temple on Monday (November 16) along with the officials from ‘Swamiji Group of Companies’.
He has pledged the amount of ₹300 crores for the renovation of the temple and its transformation into an international pilgrim centre. Gaanasravan has also vowed to cover the sanctum sanctorum with gold plates. He has pledged the remaining ₹400 crores, for the construction of a 500-bed super speciality hospital, guest houses, auditorium, sewage treatment plant, water supply scheme and ring roads. It has been reported that the hospital is likely to be the largest hospital, offering free treatment, in South India.
While speaking about his decision, Gaanasravan stated, “I was born in a family of musicians at a village around 80 km from Bengaluru. Five years ago, my Guru told me to offer prayers at Chottanikkara temple which changed my destiny. My gold business flourished and could extend trade across the globe. I believe it is the blessings of Amma that brought me good fortune. So I decided to spend part of my earnings for the development of this temple.”
He informed, “A 500-bed super speciality hospital will be established at Chottanikkara and offer free treatment to all irrespective of religion, caste or creed. We are planning to build 7 guest houses with 300 rooms each apart from a VIP guest house.” Gaanasravan added, “An old age home with a capacity to accommodate 200 people will be established as part of the development. There will be an orphanage and an auditorium with seating capacity for 5,000 people. We will be developing Chottanikkara as an international pilgrimage centre on the lines of Tirupati.”
Gold merchant to undertake infrastructure development
Gaanasravan has planned to widen the roads and develop two ring roads to ease the movement of traffic. At the same time, two large gopurams will be constructed at the eastern and western entrance of the temple using laterite stones. He has vowed to renovate the temple pond in front of the Keezhkavu temple and build an annadanam using ₹3 crores of the budget. Gaanasravan will provide a dedicated parking lot by acquiring a nearby land for ₹50 crores.
Project to be completed by 2027, claims CDB
Cochin Devaswom Board (CDB) M K Sivarajan has informed, “The work will be executed by the construction wing of Gaanasravan’s company under the supervision of the Cochin Devaswom Board (CDB). A joint account will be opened in the name of Swamiji Group and the CDB and the entire amount for each phase of the work will be transferred into this account before the work starts. If needed, the CDB will appoint a chief engineer to monitor the works. They have agreed to pay Rs 5 crore to the CDB after signing the MoU for preparatory work.”
He further added that the Cochin Devaswom Board had appealed to the Kerala High Court for the sanction and the work will commence within a month of court’s approval. The work is expected to start in January 2021 and end by 2027.