The stone laying ceremony of the Ram Temple in Ayodhya will see the construction of a monumental temple in the city where Lord Ram had taken birth. The models of the Ram temple that have been released so far showcase the architectural brilliance of engineers and workers that will be on display for the next three years.
The man who has been leading the architectural designs and commissioned the project of ram temple is Chandrakant Sompura. However, the ongoing coronavirus pandemic forced Sompura who is now aged 70 to give the stone laying event a miss that would now pave way for the starting of a project that was commissioned 30 years ago. However, his son Ashish Sompura was scheduled to be present in the groundbreaking ceremony of the Ram temple.
Chandrakant Sompura had begun work on Ram Lalla ‘s temple in Ayodhya after first visiting the site with then Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) chairman Ashok Singhal. An industrialist named Ghanshyamdas Birla had asked him if he would take over the Ram Mandir project and introduced him to Singhal. Sompura had then served in many of the Birla temples
Chandrakant Sompura was not allowed to take any instrument with him on his first visit to the garbha griha at the site in Ayodhya and he measured all the requisite dimensions with his footsteps. Sompura used to draw pencil sketches to discuss various dimensions and models of the Ram temple in those days.
The Sompura family has rich ancestry of building temples as the father of Chandrakant Sompura—Prabhashankar had built the iconic Somnath Temple in Prabhas Patan on the Gujarat coast which was inaugurated in 1951 by India’s first president, Dr Rajendra Prasad.
Sompuras believe that the skills of building temples have come naturally to them as their ancestors were taught the architecture of temple building by Vishwakarma himself. The fact that the Somnath temple was built by the father of Chandrakant Sompura, the temple remains closest to their heart among all the temples they have built. Sompuras come from Palitana town of Bhavnagar and consider themselves to be ‘residents of the moon.’