Strike called off, Mahaprasad to be available from tomorrow

Puri: Thousands of devotees, who are being deprived of ‘Mahaprasad’ in Srimandir for the last two days, will be able to get the holy food from tomorrow as the protesting Supakars (cook servitors of the temple) withdrew their agitation this evening.

The Supakars were adamant over not withdrawing their strike and had warned of continuing with it till their demands were fulfilled while the temple administration had sought five more days to sort out the matter.

The Supakars had stopped cooking Mahaprasad protesting the arrest of a fellow servitor a few days ago for selling the holy food outside Anand Bazar, a particular area inside the temple premises reserved specially for the purpose.

The SJTA has banned selling Mahaprasad outside the specified area. However, the Supkars have been protesting the directive and the Chhatisha Niyog, the highest body of the servitors, supported them.

“This is unfortunate that preparation of the Lord’s Mahaprasad has been stopped. We have come from a distance of about 500 km and have to return without having Mahaprasad,” a devotee from Kalahandi lamented. The government should restore normalcy immediately, he demanded.