Drugyel Dzong to be rebuilt to original state using old pictures

During the 22nd meet the press, Lyonchen Tshering Tobgay said that Drugyel Dzong will be rebuilt in the same way as the original former structure.

The reconstruction announcement comes after the birth of His Royal Highness The Gyalsey. Upon the Royal Command of His Majesty; Lyonchhen graced the Salhang Tendrel Ceremony conducted on 6th February.

It will be rebuilt by looking at some of the photographs taken by a British Political Officer for Sikkim, John Claude White who also happened to be an avid photographer and visited Bhutan around five times.  The Dzong is expected to complete within two years, if not within two and half years, said Lyonchen.

Along with design work, every work related to the reconstruction of the Dzong like plans, quarry of stone, logging of timber and work force will be coordinated simultaneously.

The meeting to discuss various issues on stone quarry, logging timber and construction of temporary shelter for workers was held yesterday with the people residing near Drugyel, Lyonchen said.

Research is being carried out as to whether it can be reconstructed on the remains of the old structure and if those old remains are strong enough then it will be rebuilt on its old structure.

Lyonchen said, “We will form a committee for this special project but I will look after the overall work progress of Drugyel Dzong reconstruction and Wangduephodrang Dzong reconstruction as well.”

Lyonchen also said one of the best opportunities for youths to work in construction site would be the reconstruction of Drugyel Dzong, for it is being rebuilt for the peace, prosperity and harmony of the nation, especially on the birth of Gyalsey.

Minister of Finance, Lyonpo Namgay Dorji said, “We are fortunate to have the birth of the Gyalsey and the reconstruction of Drugyel Dzong will be a historical event and monument for the Bhutanese people.”

“For this very reason, we will not seek any financial assistance from any country or any financial agencies. We will find the budget within the country and reconstruct it on our own,” he said.

Upon the request of Zhabdrung Ngawang Namgyal, Drugyel Dzong was built by the second Desi Tenzin Drukdra in 1649 to commemorate a victory over an invasion from Tibet that was repelled.

In the early 1950s, the Drugyel Dzong caught fire and was destroyed almost completely and so what we see today is the ruins of the old Drugyel Dzong.

With the birth of Gyalsey and the news of Drugyel Dzong reconstruction, there is anticipation to see a new Drugyel Dzong that will also symbolize a new era for Bhutan.


Tshering Tashi/ Thimphu


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