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Eviction Near Lingaraj Temple Resumes

Bhubaneswar: The massive eviction drive to clear encroachments around Lingaraj Temple in Bhubaneswar resumed today. The eviction that begun on December 9 was temporarily suspended after local traders and residents strongly opposed the move and staged demonstrations.

As per reports, the eviction drive today was carried out in the Southern side of the temple and the authorities demolished the Tara Tarini temple and Mahadev temple. To maintain law and order, several platoons of police were deployed during the eviction.

Earlier on December 12 (Thursday), the demonstrators opposing the eviction had forced the authorities to withdraw. However, no such untoward incidents were reported today during the eviction.

Amid protests over the eviction of encroachments around the 12th-century shrine, Odisha government has announced a special package for rehabilitation of affected stakeholders. However, the traders and locals have expressed their dissatisfaction over the announced assistance terming it as insufficient.

“The state government’s announcement has created confusion among the people as it has not set any guidelines to identify the affected locals and traders. Besides, it has not clarified how the compensation would differ between traders and residents,” alleged Truptimayee Makdam, a local resident.

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Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation commissioner, Prem Chand Choudhury, on the other hand, said that the civic body will look into the matter. “We will compensate the affected people on the basis of the land. Will find out whether there was any land acquisition or direct purchase.”

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