Vikash Sharma

In a major decision, the Odisha government on Monday announced the establishment of a Special Security Battalion for the Puri Sri Jagannath temple. Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik approved the proposal following the feedback by the 5T Chairman after discussions with stakeholders, the state government said in a release.

Sources said that the Special Security Battalion would focus on the security of the Srimandir, crowd management, and assist scores of devotees that visit the temple.

The new battalion would have the primary responsibility of providing foolproof security to the temple. The personnel will be specially trained for better crowd management and tourist/devotee facilitation to ensure a hassle-free and orderly darshan by the devotees.

The Special Security Battalion would have around 1190 personnel, and it would be placed under the command and control of the Puri Superintendent of Police.

It is pertinent to mention here that in the post-Covid period, the daily footfall of devotees was estimated to be about fifty thousand at Puri Jagannath temple. Moreover, it doubles and trebles during the weekends and on important religious occasions.

According to the Odisha government, the inflow of devotees is likely to register a substantial increase after the inauguration of the new Heritage Corridor Project (Srimandir Parikrama Prakalp).

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