Puri temple row: HC rejects ISKCON plea on PKDA order

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Cuttack/Bhubaneswar: The Orissa High Court on Wednesday rejected the appeal of International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON) challenging an order of Puri-Konark Development Authority (PKDA) regarding the former’s proposed construction of a Jagannath temple in Puri.

In its order, the court asked ISKCON to present its side before PKDA on the temple project and its construction.

The organisation had moved the HC following PKDA’s order to ‘stop work’ on the temple at Baliapanda in the holy city and submit details about the project. PKDA issued the order after chief minister Naveen Patnaik asked the RDC (Central Division) to inquire into allegations of land grabbing by ISKCON for the proposed mega temple.

ISKCON knocked on the doors of HC when it was asked by RDC to submit its report within 60 days.

During a hearing on the matter on January 29, the HC had issued an interim stay till February 17 forbidding any action by PKDA in the matter till further orders.

ISKCON, however, has denied the charge that it proposed to build a Lord Jagannath temple in the pilgrim town. It clarified that It would be a Radha-Krishna temple and Lord Jagannath, Lord Balabhadra and Devi Subhadra would not be worshipped in it.

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