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‘Dhadi Darshan’ Protest Violence Brought Bad Name For Puri People & Sevaks: SJTA Chief


04 October 2018

Ajesh Mallick


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Bhubaneswar: Reacting to yesterday’s violent protest against the ‘Dhadi Darshan’ (queue system) implemented on experimental basis from October 1 in pursuance of the Supreme Court’s direction, Shree Jagannath Temple Administration (SJTA) chief administrator Pradipta Mohapatra strongly condemned it and dubbed it a sad incident for Puri that was beyond expectations.

In his media reactions today at the State Secretariat here, the SJTA chief said, “Whatever happened yesterday, it’s a very sad incident for Puri. It was beyond our expectations.”

“The incident has brought a very bad name for the people and Sevaks of Puri,” the SJTA chief remarked.

He informed, “Police and administration had been instructed to maintain absolute restraint. Collector and SP have also suffered stone pelting. About 15 police personnel have sustained injuries. I had been to Puri yesterday.”

He added, “Had held discussion with District Judge and decided for the ‘Dhadi Darshan’ system on experimental basis. Also we were open to further suggestions for implementation. But, there was no need for such impatient fracas. It had been decided and the Sevaks were also allowed to enter and exit through all four gates.”

“Learned Amicus Curiae had phoned twice yesterday from Delhi. He is extremely saddened at yesterday’s incident. He has asked me for all video footage and detailed report on yesterday untoward incident. Very soon he would be visiting Puri,” the SJTA chief further informed, adding, “There is direction from the Supreme Court for hassle-free darshan in queue. It has been approved in the managing committee. Also it was discussed in the Chhatisha Nijog meeting. All Sevaks were well aware of it. Even I had darshan of the deities on October 1 (implementation day) in queue. There had been no problem.”

“When hooligans indulged in such type of behavior, such incident occurs. Those who are organizing the bandh have no control. Amicus Curiae has sought all video footages even from the media. Two FIRs have been filed, one from the temple’s office and another from the information centre. I’ll be sending a report to Amicus Curiae either today or by tomorrow,” he commented.

Meanwhile, Odisha DGP R.P. Sharma today took stock of the situation at Puri and Srimandir a day after the violence that erupted during Puri Bandh over ‘Dhadi Darshan’ (queue system) at the 12th-century shrine. Apart from IG (Central Range) Soumendra Priyadarshi, IG (Law and Order) Amitabh Thakur was also present with the DGP.

Also Read: Srimandir ‘Dhadi Darshan’ Revolt: Normalcy Limps Back To Puri City, Restrictions Relaxed A Bit

Also Read: Puri Local Devotees Can Enter Srimandir After Showing Identity Cards: Collector

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Pradipta Mohapatra, Chief Administrator, SJTA, Puri, Odisha