Judicial panel formed to suggest reforms in Puri temple

Bhubaneswar: Taking strong note of the Niladri Bije fiasco last Sunday, Odisha government today set up a judicial commission headed by former judge of the Orissa High Court Justice Bimal Prasad Das to suggest reforms in management of Puri Sri Jagannath temple.

Informing media persons about the government decision, Law Minister Arun Sahoo said, “The Commission would give suggestions on disciplined rituals, security arrangements, disciplined darshan for devotees, training and education to servitors, conservation of heritage and propagation of Jagannath culture.”

Former chief administrator of the Shri Jagannath Temple Administration (SJTA) Mahimohan Tripathy will assist the Commission, added the Law Minister.

Notably, during the Niladri Bije on Sunday at Puri, ugly scenes were seen when one of the senior servitors took his young daughter to the Taladhwaja chariot for darshan defying a ban on devotees climbing the chariots. Some women devotees and minor girls were also taken to the chariots for darshan.

When the media persons tried to get a comment on the issue from the SJTA chief administrator and the Law Minister present near to the chariots, some servitors manhandled media persons on duty. Besides, the servitors also misbehaved with Puri Collector Arvind Agarwal who was present at the spot trying to stop the servitors from taking devotees onto the chariot.