Prez to fast till he offers prayers to Lord Jagannth
Puri: President Pranab Mukherjee will fast on Saturday till he offers pujas at Sri Jagannth Temple here during his visit to Odisha, official sources said.
"The President will not eat anything till he offers puja at the 12th century shrine," said Puri District Magistrate N K Nayak, who is overseeing the overall arrangements made for the visiting president.
During his night halt at the Raj Bhavan here on September 6, Mukherjee will pay a visit to the sand art to be created by noted sand artist Sudarshan Pattnaik.
For the president's dinner on Friday night, at least 22 vegetarian items are being prepared at a hotel here.
An insider of the hotel said the President's dishes would include Odisha's famous "Chhena Poda" and "Khir Sagar".
Mukherjee is scheduled to visit the temple on Saturday morning. The state government has already asked the Sri Jagannath Temple Administration to ensure that minimum people remain present in the temple during the President's visit.
Besides deployment of 22 platoons (660 personnel) for the President's visit, the Coast Guard would patrol in the sea adjoining Puri town, sources said adding that the temple administration has decided to present a 'patachitra' painting to Mukherjee.
Gajapati Maharaja of Puri Divyasingha Deb will receive the President on his arrival at the Lion's Gate of the 12th century Lord Vishnu shrine.