Rashmi Ranjan

The Orissa High Court on Tuesday issued a notice to the State government asking it to submit a response on the Puri Srimandir Ratna Bhandar (treasure trove) key missing case.

While hearing a petition filed by Puri-based social worker Dillip Baral seeking direction to make the report of Justice Raghubir Das Commission of Inquiry public, the court directed Chief Secretary Pradeep Kumar Jena and Law Secretary to submit response in connection with the matter.

“The Justice Raghubir Das Commission was submitted in November 2018. As per the law, when a commission submits its report, it is the responsibility of the government that it should be tabled in the Assembly along with a memorandum. But, the Odisha government has done nothing,” said Anup Kumar Mohapatra, a lawyer.

“The disappearance of the Ratna Bhandar key had created a lot of confusion. In between five years have passed, the report is yet to be made public. We have also prayed the court to allow ASI to carry out Ratna Bhandar repair work,” Mohapatra added.

Notably in June 2018, the Odisha government had formed a commission headed by Justice Raghubir Das, a retired judge of Orissa High Court, to probe the disappearance of the 12th-century treasury key following widespread public outcry over the matter.

Later in December 2018, the commission had submitted a 324-page report to the Home Department.

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