2 servitors arrested for heckling Puri collector

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Puri: Two servitors of the Puri Jagannath temple have been arrested by Singhadwar police for misbehaving with Puri collector Arvind Agarwal during the Niladri Bije ritual of Lord Jagannath and his siblings, informed Puri SP Sarthak Sarangi.

The arrested servitors has been identified as Surya Naryan Pratihari and Raghunath Khuntia.

While Surya Narayan was arrested in morning today, Raghunath was arrested by police in the afternoon.

Moreover, 15 persons, who attacked media persons trying to cover the disruption in Niladri Bije ritual after devotees were allowed to climb chariots despite a ban, have been identified from the Close Circuit Television Camera (CCTV) footage, he said.

Out of the 15 persons identified,two servitors have already been arrested by police for attacking newsmen, said Sarthak Sarangi.

Puri collector Arvind Agarwal had lodged two FIRs with the SP against six servitors who had misbehaved with and abused him in foul language and threatened to kill him during Niladri Bije of the deities. The six servitors against whom the FIRs have been lodged are Damodar Mahasuara, Jayakrushna Mahasuara, Bhimsen Palankdhari, Rabi Das, Ipsit Pratihari and Saina Khuntia.

The pahandi of Sudarsana during the Niladri Bije of the deities from the chariots to the Ratna Sinhasana was disrupted after Puri Collector Arvind Agarwal, who was present at the spot, had an altercation with some servitors on the devotees, said to be relatives of servitors, climbing the chariots.

Media persons who were out to find the reasons behind the delay in Pahandi were manhandled by the servitors.

Notably, a young girl, accompanied by a senior servitor, climbed the Taladhwaja chariot of Lord Balabhadra, while two girls and a woman were also found climbing the Nandighosa and Taladhwaja chariots.

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