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Pradeep Pattanayak

Puri Vikash Parishad (PVP), a social-rights body, has filed a complaint with the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) citing serious concerns over sufferings of devotees due to lack of adequate facilities during darshan of Lord Jagannath at Puri Srimandir. 

The president of PVP, Jagannath Bastia has filed the complaint drawing the attention of the country's apex human rights watchdog on several aspects pertaining to the 12th century shrine. 

In the plaint, Bastia has raised the issues of how devotees are made to stand in sun for long periods during entry into the temple and darshan as well. 

Apart from that, Bastia has also explained about sufferings of senior citizens and physically challenged persons due to lack of specific facilities and how devotees fail to get good darshan in the temple due to presence of servitors infront of the deities. 

The PVP has sought a direction from the NHRC with regard to providing all basic facilities to devotees during the darshan of the Holy Trinity. 

The filing of petition came in the wake of the stampede like-situation witnessed at the Lion’s gate of the Srimandir on the occasion of Dola Purnima, on March 18. 

Notably, thousands of devotees standing in lines at the Singha Dwara had to brave the beating sun and sultry weather to get a glimpse of Suna Besha (Golden Attire) of the deities. 

The situation suddenly went out of control and turned into a stampede-like incident when several exasperated devotees attempted to barge into the shrine, breaking the barricades.

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