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Brihadeeswara Temple Turns 1000 Years Old In 2010

Built in 1010 AD by Raja Raja Chola, the Brihadeeswara Temple at Thanjavur in Tamil Nadu, popularly known as Big Temple, is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Government, Archeological Survey of India, and the people of Tanjavur are getting ready to mark the 1,000 years of Brihadeeswara Temple – poetry in stone.

Times of India reports

"A committee will be formed to plan events for the celebration. Besides cleaning up the temple, we are planning to beautify the entire city. The encroachments near the temple will be removed," said collector MS Shanmugam.

The Archaeological Survey of India that maintains the temple has just completed restoration of the northern corridor. The floor had sunk, unable to bear the weight of the stone pillars and ceiling. The ASI took up restoration work in 2006 and completed it at a cost of Rs 63 lakh. Landscaping is also being done in the precincts of the temple. "More grass instead of brick will reduce heat generation," said an ASI official.

One of the major projects planned ahead of the millennium celebrations is a light and sound show in English and Tamil to give visitors an insight into the history of the temple.

The other project is conservation of the moat around the temple which was so far under the control of Thanjavur municipality. It has been handed over to ASI. The moat was created in 1550 when the Nayaks used the temple as a fortress.

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