PURI: A police officer has been accused of touching Devi Subhadra’s idol during Niladri Bije ritual on Thursday evening. The cop, Amulya Kumar Dhar, a former inspector of Sea Beach police station, was on cordon duty near the Baisi Pahacha (22 steps leading to the temple) during ‘Pahandi’ of the deities. He allegedly touched the idol of Devi Subhadra while servitors were taking Her inside the sanctum sanctorum.
Receiving the allegation, temple chief administrator PK Jena called for an inquiry and IG (central range) has been entrusted with the job. The CCTV footage of ‘Pahandi’ will be examined on Friday as a part of the inquiry, Jena said. On the other hand, the magistrates deployed on Rath Yatra duty have alleged misbehaviour by police officers and constables.
Members of Odisha Administrative Officers’ Association, at an emergency meeting on Thursday, levelled allegations of misbehaviour by police officers on duty. They later met District Magistrate Arabind Agarwal and informed that Nilu Mahapatra, Tehsildar of Begunia, and Sukanta Behera, Tehsidar of Padampur, were deployed as magistrates in the ‘Rath’ cordon area and their duty was from 12 pm to 6 am.
They alleged that when the magistrates reached the cordon area, inspector Ajay Jena of Marine police station did not allow them to enter even after they showed them their identity cards. They further alleged that Ajay Jena also misbehaved with the two magistrates. The officers said the cops also misbehaved with some senior administrative officers during Rath Yatra. Agarwal summoned Ajay Jena and asked him to give a written statement by Friday.