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Rajendra Prasad Mohapatra

Devotees across the State on Saturday thronged Puri Srimandir in large numbers to have the darshan of the Trinity as the temple will be out of bounds for them till January 31.

In the backdrop of the alarming spike in Covid-19 cases in Odisha, the Sri Jagannath Temple Administration (SJTA) on Friday announced to close the doors of Srimandir for public from January 10 to 31. Moreover as per the current restrictions, the temple remains closed for public darshan every Sunday and it will continue.

As per reports, large numbers of people are standing in long queues on the Grad Road and waiting for their turn to have a glimpse of Lord Jagannath, Lord Balabhadra and Goddess Subhadra.

“Today is the last occasion on the first month of the New Year to get darshan of Lord Jagannath and seek his blessings as the temple will remain close from tomorrow till the end of the month. Hence, we have come to Puri and are desperate to have the glimpse of the Trinity,” said a devotee.
As per Puri district Collector Samarth Verma, in a bid to arrest the rapid surge of virus cases, the SJTA and Chatisa Nijoga decided to close the doors of Srimandir for public during a virtual meeting yesterday.

“It is a matter of serious concern as temple servitors are getting infected in more numbers. On the other hand, a large number of devotees are thronging the temple from different places, creating a vulnerable situation. Therefore, such a decision was taken so that the temple rituals don't get affected. Safety of the servitors and the devotees are our priorities,” said Verma.

(Edited by Rashmi Ranjan Mohanty)

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