Nitesh Kumar Sahoo

The Superintendent of the Archaeological Survey of India on Monday issued a letter to the Chief Administrator of Srimandir in Puri for the opening of the treasury, popularly known as Ratna Bhandar.

While the demand for the opening of Ratna Bhandar is gathering steam, as mentioned in the letter written to the Chief Administrator, the ASI will inspect the treasury. 

In the letter, the ASI Superintendent has asked the Srimandir administration to take the required measures to open the 'Bhitara Ratna Bhandar' or the inner treasure chamber of Sree Jagannath Temple as it is not in a good condition. 

A letter regarding the same also has been sent to the State Law Department and ASI DG. 

It is worth mentioning that following the Orissa High Court's order on March 22, 2018, an attempt was made to open the Ratna Bhandar on April 4. A special team was formed to carry out an inspection, however, as the treasury keys were missing , the treasury could not be opened. Then the team carried out an inspection from outside and reported that the physical condition of Ratna Bhandar was weak.

Earlier on July 6, Puri king Gajapati Maharaja Dibyasingha Deb expressed his desire to see the Ratna Bhandar to be opened as soon as possible. He also raised demands for early repair of the Ratna Bhandar as its condition is not good.

Last time, the Ratna Bhandar was opened in 1978 and 1982.