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Rashmi Rekha Das

A video showing the idol of Lord Jagannath being taken on a pick-up van loaded with clothes, bamboos and other wooden materials has gone viral in social media. The viral video has created a storm among Jagannath devotees who termed it disrespectful.

Moreover, a social activist also intercepted the pick-up van and asked its driver not to carry Lord Jagannth’s idol in such a way. After advice, the driver kept the idol at a proper place. But by this time, the incident had already become viral.

The video did not go down well with Lord Jagnnath devotees across the state and they condemned the incident which took place at Haldipada on Balasore-Jaleswar Road.

It is learnt that a tent owner had erected a tent for Ganesh puja. He has installed the idol of Lord Jagannath there. Following the immersion of Ganesh idol, a few workers hired by the tent owner had removed all his tent materials including the idol of Lord Jagannath from the spot and loaded those materials in a pick-up van. It was then the social worker got to see how the Jagannath idol was being carried and captured it in video.

Tent owner said, “Whatever my workers have done is really disgraceful. To get rid of the sin they had committed, I held fast and came to Jagannath temple for begging forgiveness. I would like to apologise for hurting the sentiments of Jagannath devotees. I will never commit such mistakes in future.”

Binay Kumar Pradhan, the social worker, who captured the video, said, “I was returning from Bhubaneswar to Jaeswar on Thursday when I spotted the pick-up van in which the idol of Jagannath was hanging haphazardly. It hurt me very much. When I wanted them to explain the reason, the driver said ‘it is a tent material.’ I intercepted the vehicle and removed the idol from that place. When I wanted to take the idol with me, they realized their mistake and kept the idol at a proper place.”

Terming the incident as disgraceful, he said, “Stringent action should be taken against those who hurt the religious sentiment of Jagannath lovers.”

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