Puri police meet Ileana, begin probe

Published: 24th July 2013 10:30 AM  |   Last Updated: 24th July 2013 10:30 AM   |  A+A-

Puri-Police-Meet

Puri police on Tuesday began probe into the alleged assault on noted Italy-born Odissi dancer Ileana Citaristi by servitors. A two-member team from Singhadwar police station in Puri met the Odissi exponent at her residence here and recorded her statement over the incident. The dancer had on Sunday accused servitors of assaulting her atop Lord Jagannath’s chariot at Puri.

Ileana was allegedly beaten up by some uncouth servitors for refusing to pay Rs 1,000 as dakshina (offering), demanded by them for allowing her to offer prayers on the chariot.

In her complaint to the temple chief administrator Arvind Padhee, she has alleged that one Krushna Chandra Das Mohapatra and some other servitors beat her up on Sunday after she refused them the money. “Police came here to verify the facts mentioned in the FIR and recorded my statement. It seems there are two to three servitors by the same name and the investigating officer will now have to find out who the actual person was,” Ileana said.

More than the arrest of the accused servitors, the dancer said, the temple administration should train them for being people-friendly and improve security on the chariots as well. “There are stringent security measures around the chariots during Rath Yatra, but what about the situation atop the chariots?” she questioned. “Since there are no cops and CCTVs inside the chariots, these servitors get a chance to trouble and even assault devotees and easily get away with it. This needs to be addressed on a priority basis so that no servitor gets a chance to trouble devotees.

Besides, they should be trained to behave properly with devotees at least for the sake of Lord Jagannath,” she said, adding that such kind of unsavoury incidents only tarnish the image of Jagannath culture.

On the other hand, even as the Daitapati Nijoga had maintained that they would try to solve the case amicably, none from the Nijoga has approached the dancer with an apology till now.

In another development, the temple administration has issued show cause notices on two servitors of Daitapati Nijoga for ‘indiscipline’ and delay in rituals of Bahuda Yatra. Nijoga president Ramakrushana Das Mohapatra and secretary Premananda Das Mohapatra have been asked by the temple administration to submit their replies within seven days.

Stay up to date on all the latest Odisha news with The New Indian Express App. Download now
(Get the news that matters from New Indian Express on WhatsApp. Click this link and hit 'Click to Subscribe'. Follow the instructions after that.)

Comments

Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp