Mrunal Manmay Dash

Mysterious clay pots found buried underneath the demolished Emar Mutt near Srimandir in Puri have raised many questions, including the non-discloser of GPS mapping report.

It has been alleged that the pots found during excavation of the site did not concern the officials who shifted the soil to another place. Reportedly, construction of Sri Jagannath Reception Centre (SJRC) and Raghunandan Library is underway near the age-old and now razed, Emar Mutt.

“There were many old clay pots which were moved by the government and the contractor to another place. Nobody knows what was there in those pots. There may be some valuables or things of historical significance. Neither the contractor nor the government seems to be concerned about the buried artefacts. The contractor is just doing its job and the government does not care,” said senior servitor, Vinayak Dasmahapatra.

“Even the GPS mapping report has been kept hidden from us. If any valuable things are found in those clay pots, they should be handed over to the ASI,” said Dasmahapatra.

Asked about the clay pots, an intellectual from Puri said, “Those clay pots are thousand years old. They certainly bear historical significance. The Emar Mutt was associated with the Jagannath Temple for hundreds of years. In earlier centuries, with no good facilities for Jagannath darshan, the devotees used to hand over all their donations to the Mahants of Emar Mutt. They were all hidden under the soil. It has been proven earlier with the discovery of silver bricks some years back.”

“It seems that the government and the contractors have looted the valuables hidden under the Emar Mutt. Not only the clay pots, many other artefacts like idols and other things are also buried here. They are all gone. The contractor has excavated them all with the soil. Those artefacts either bear no significance for the contractor or they have looted them intentionally,” he added.

Precious objects such as silver bricks, bronze idols, etc. were found at different times from the Emar Mutt along with a lion's statue. After the discovery, it was suspected that there were still many more secret treasures inside the Emar Mutt.

On May 18, 2022, the OBCC carried out a GPRS mapping at Rs 41.60 lakh. Mapping was done around the temple and the premises of the Mutt. However, it is alleged that its report has not been made public so far.

The people in the know opposed the construction of SJRC and Raghunandan Library alleging non-discloser of GPS mapping report which was undertaken to ascertain any possible hidden treasure underneath the Emar Mutt site.

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