Daitapati father-son duo seeks revocation of suspension

Puri: After remaining out of the Srimandir for almost a year since last year’s Nabakalebara Rath Yatra, Daitapati Jayakrushna Das Mohapatra, suspended for his alleged role in the Brahma Parivartan mismanagement, has written to the Sri Jagannath Temple Administration (SJTA) seeking revocation of the suspension order on him and his father.

He has also copied the letter to Srimandir Management Committee chairman Gajapati Maharaj Divyasingh Deb, the chief secretary and the Law secretary by post.

Jayakrushna said the government is yet to finish the probe even as this year’s Rath Yatra festival has started knocking on the door.

“Even though one year has elapsed since the Nabakalebar festival, the temple administration is yet to revoke the suspension order on me and my father. We are deprived of the service of the Lord which is our basic right. Perhaps the chief administrator has forgotten the matter. So, I reminded him through my letter requesting him to lift the restriction,” Jayakrushna said.

“Daitapatis have a special duty during Rath Yatra. So, I urged the temple administration not to deprive us of this holy service”, he added.

The senior servitor rued that many others were equally responsible for the massive mismanagement during the Brahma Parivartan. “Why should I and my father bear the brunt of temple administration?” he asked. “Injustice has been done to us”, the Daita servitor said.

He mentioned in the letter that the administration had deliberately taken action against them even though they had performed all the rituals and service properly and with almost devotion during the big holy event.

The alleged mismanagement in the most secret ritual of Lord Jagannath had created much hue and cry across the country last year.

Under fire from different quarters for alleged mismanagement in Lord Jagannath’s ‘Brahma Paribartan’, the temple administration had on June 24, 2015 suspended the father-son duo on the charges of creating chaos inside the temple leading to delay of the all-important ritual on June 15 last year.

“Jayakrushna Dasmohapatra and Kashinath Dasmohapatra have been suspended from Daita Seva for an indefinite period under section 21 (B) of the Shri Jagannath Temple Act, 1954,” SJTA Chief Administrator Suresh Mohapatra had said at the time.

Clash between two groups of Daitapati priests led to delay in ‘Brahma Paribartan’, which was scheduled to be held in the dead of the night or ‘Amabashya’ and ‘Sankranti’ on ‘Chaturdashi tithi’ on June 15. But the ritual was conducted several hours late during daytime on June 16 sparking resentment among lakhs of Jagannath devotees.

Brahma Paribartan’ is the most secret and sacred ritual of Lord Jagannath when the selected Daitapati priests transfer Brahma (life substance) from old idols to the new ones during the Nabakalebara festival.