An attempt to install the Hanuman Temple was made a day before Basant Panchami (February 16) as well but it wasn’t successful after a commercial vehicle carrying the structure was stopped from entering the 1.3-km stretch between Red Fort and Fatehpuri Masjid, which is being turned into a car-free zone, it is learnt.
“The original plan was to install it on the night of February 15-16 as Basant Panchami is an auspicious day to inaugurate it, but police personnel turned back the vehicle after the driver failed to explain why he was there,” said a source involved in setting up the new temple.
Later, prominent traders from the locality decided that the driver would tell personnel manning the entrance to the stretch that he was carrying construction material.
The source also said ever since the January 26 violence at Red Fort, police deployment has been shifted to near the monument. “There is a canopy for personnel right next to the place (where the temple came up) but there were no police there,” he said.
A senior police officer, however, said there are still enough personnel patrolling the Chandni Chowk stretch.
While no one claimed responsibility for the new structure, sources said that the plan was set in motion 10-15 days ago after some “influential locals” got in touch with the Delhi BJP and RSS leaders, complaining that not enough was being done to re-establish the temple. Early Friday, when it was still dark, some people who were kept in loop were called and it took over an hour to put the nuts and bolts in place.
A resident who did not wish to be named said that a day earlier, some digging work was done in the area so fixing the new structure would be easier.
The central verge structure on which the temple has been placed was constructed by PWD a few months ago for plantation purposes.
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