Rath Yatra telecast row: Odisha Law Minister mum on who authorised auction

Puri: Odisha Law Minister Pratap Jena, though broke his silence over the Rath Yatra live telecast controversy, he remained mum on whether the Shree Jagannath Temple Administration (SJTA) had sought permission for inviting bids from television channels.

Speaking to media persons, the minister said the channels have been asked to share a portion of their profit earned from the live broadcasting of the mega event and the matter is under scrutiny and steps will be taken after reviewing the matter.

“We will visit Puri tomorrow and to hold discussions with the Shree Jagannath Temple Administration (SJTA) in this regard,” Jena said adding that the final decision would be taken after the meeting with SJTA.

However, the minister evaded questions on whether the SJTA had sought permission before inviting bids from the TV channels for the live broadcast rights of the event.

Earlier, the SJTA had decided to auction the live telecast rights of the Puri Rath Yatra and later backpedalled on its decision after collecting bids. As earlier, all the channels will now be allowed to telecast the event.