The serto (Golden pinnacle) of Duetul Namgyalgang Choeten  in Zhemgang, which was damaged by a lightening on May 5, will soon be restored.

Lightning has also caused cracks on the Chuzum Khorlo (thirteen rings), which is the ring like structure that is placed between the dzartsha, pema and the drey above the bumpa.

The red bricks that were used for the choeten construction can be seen scattered around the choeten, while concrete dzartsha still lies on the ground.

Sonam Tenzin, 68, who lives near the choeten reciting prayers said he was awake for morning prayers when lightning hit the choeten.

“I heard a strange crumbling sound with lightning sparks,” he said.

He said that when he came out of his hut at dawn, he saw the serto on the ground. “We immediately informed the authorities and they came for investigation.”

Zhemgang Lam Neten Karma Gelay said the dratshang will soon conduct Zhiwai Jinseg ritual and Lhamoi Soelkha before the restoration work.

The dratshang has wrapped the choeten’s upper part with a blue plastic and  the lam neten said it was to prevent water from seeping into the choeten.

He also said the serto was not damaged much but the dzartsha was totally damaged. “We took the brass wrapped around the dzartsha thinking if it could be used later,” he said. “It is the biggest and the tallest Jangchub choeten in Zhemgang.”

The lam neten said the choeten was constructed in 2005 on His Holiness the Je khenpo Trulku Jigme Chhoeda’s advise and Polo khenpo’s prophecy. “It was prophesised that peace and prosperity would prevail in the country and the Kheng region if a choeten was constructed here.”

Locals say the place was considered haunted and prone to paranormal sightings, for which the choeten was built.

The choeten is located at some eight kilometres from Zhemgang town towards Dakphel.

Nima Wangdi | Zhemgang