A proposal was on Sunday put forward by Union Cabinet ministers for a school of sculpture at Konark which would promote the dying craft of the artisans of the region as depicted on the walls of the Sun Temple.
The proposal for the school was mooted by Union Petroleum and Natural Gas Minister M Veerappa Moily and Fertiliser Minister Srikanta Jena with both offering Rs 5 crore each for the purpose from funds belonging to their respective ministries.
The leaders were attending the foundation stone-laying ceremony, sponsored by Indian Oil Foundation (IOF), for a project to develop tourist facilities at Konark.
The proposed school is to be named after Dharmapada, the legendary son of the main artisan of the Sun Temple who is said to have laid down his life for the sake of his fellow workers.
Before Moily’s address to the gathering, Jena had announced that his ministry would sanction Rs 5 crore towards setting up a school of architecture in the name of Dharmapada at Konark.
However, during his speech, Moily amended the proposal put forth by Jena and said that instead of a school of architecture, he favoured a school of sculpture.
“Although a school of architecture is a laudable idea, we can also look (to start) a school of sculpture so that the hidden art of sculpture at Konark can be highlighted. It will come up next year itself,” Moily said.
Jena later told reporters that sculpture was a part of architecture and the idea (to have a school for it) was good.
He urged Odisha government to provide 10 acres of land for setting up the proposed school.
Moily added that renowned sculptor and Padma Vibhushan awardee Raghunath Mohapatra could be the guide for an endeavour to unearth hidden talent in Odisha.(PTI)