The construction of Kasthamandap, one of the important heritages in the world heritage site Hanumandhoka Durbar Square, Kathmandu has accomplished. The historic wooden structure was flattened by the 2015 April 25 earthquake and the reconstruction campaign was started 2018 November 8.
President Bidyadevi Bhandari has opened the traditional pavilion to general people on Monday amidst a function organised by Kasthamandap Reconstruction Committee.
Kathmandu Metropolitan City had invested Rs 115 million for the post-earthquake reconstruction project. The Department of Archaeology had estimated that the rebuilding project would cost Rs 198 million and the participation of the community in the construction works reduced the cost by Rs 8.3 million in comparison to the preliminary estimation.
Long-lasting timber which may last up to 2,000 years has been used for the reconstructions and they were gathered from Bara, Parsa, Rautahat, Mahottari and Kanchanpur districts. Two logs from the previous structure have been used in the new one. One dates back of 1,600 years ago and another is 1000-year-old. The date of the objects was tested through a carbon dating technology.
Kasthamandap is a three-storied public shelter that included a shrine consecrated to Gorakhanath situated near Hanumandhoka, Kathmandu. Several myths and stories about the date of the construction of the Kasthamandap have been resolved with the recent archaeological findings: newly discovered objects during the excavation in the aftermath of the 2015 earthquake have indicated that Kasthamandap might have been built in the 7th century during ruling period of Lichchhavis.
Repair, maintenance and reconstructions of this culturally and architectural value might have been carried out several times in the past. Concerned stakeholders such as trustees undertake periodic repair and maintenance in certain intervals.
Moreover, it is to mention that the reconstruction committee has cited that the construction or reconstruction of the structure is believed to be incomplete until price of salt and cooking oil come to be equal. (By Ram Dangol)