Shankar (fourth right) and his wife Karishma Shankar Asnani (fourth left) in a group photo with (from  left) Wee, Ong, Doreen, Juma’ani, Abang Johari, Uggah, Dr Sim, and Fatimah. — Photo by Roystein Emmor

KUCHING (Nov 12): The Sri Maha Mariamman Temple at Jalan Rock here is expected to be completed by June next year, said Shankar RP Asnani.

The Sri Maha Mariamman Temple president said at present, the temple is now at 65 per cent completion.

“The main structures of the temple are already up and right now, we are doing the sculptures which is a very intricate process,” he said at his Deepavali luncheon which was graced by Premier Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Abang Johari Tun Openg and his wife Datin Patinggi Datuk Amar Juma’ani Tuanku Bujang here today.

Construction for the Sri Maha Mariamman Temple, which is set to have the highest ‘Raja Gopuram’ or monumental entrance tower in Borneo, has been delayed due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Shankar, who is also Kuching South City Council (MBKS) councillor, expressed gratitude to Abang Johari and Sarawak government for the allocation of funds towards the construction of the temple.

The prominent lawyer also thanked the Premier for his support and contributions extended to the Indian community in the state.

He said Sarawak’s development has progressed rapidly under the leadership of Abang Johari who has “worked relentlessly and selflessly for the state.”

“Our Premier has been steadfast in guarding Sarawak’s interests in various matters such as the right to use English as an official language.

“The use of dual languages namely Bahasa Malaysia and English, is a remarkable stand by our Premier,” he said, adding his hopes that Abang Johari will continue to fight for Sarawak’s rights.

On Deepavali, Shankar said the celebration aims to bring people of diverse cultures together to forge an understanding and respect for one another.

Also present were Deputy Premier Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas and his wife Datin Amar Dato Doreen Mayang, Deputy Premier Datuk Amar Dr Sim Kui Hian and his wife Datin Amar Enn Ong, Women, Childhood and Community Wellbeing Development Minister Dato Sri Fatimah Abdullah, and Kuching South mayor Dato Wee Hong Seng.