DEHRADUN: Uttarakhand government has banned any protest in the radius of 200 meters around Kedarnath temple.
Ravinath Raman, chief executive officer of Char Dham Devsthanam Board who is also the commissioner of the Garhwal division of Uttarakhand said, "The directions were passed to avoid any issues in and around the revered shrine. We have been conducting several rounds of talks with priests to resolve their issues."
The orders come after a priest who was protesting since June in front of the temple had to be airlifted to All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Rishikesh after his condition worsened on September 7.
Santosh Trivedi, a priest from Kedarnath shrine who had been protesting since June 12 at an elevation of 11,300 feet above sea level against the formation of the Char Dham Devasthanam Management Board had warned the state government that he will shed his religion if the government fails to pay heed to his demands.
The priest is demanding the withdrawal of the law under which the board was formed therefore nullifying the board and stopping construction work in the Kedarnath shrine.
The district administration of Rudraprayag where the shrine is located has been in talks with the priests to resolve issues related to ongoing projects.
The priests have been demanding nullifying the law under which the board was formed in December last year.
On September 5, displaying their angst over the formation of the Char Dham Devsthanam Board by the Uttarakhand government, Char Dham priests had written a letter to the chief secretary of the state protesting against the formation of the board.
In the letter, they also urged the state government to complete the beautification of the Kedarnath Dham at the earliest.
In December 2019, the Bill related to the management of Char Dham was passed after discussion in the Uttarakhand state assembly.
In July this year, the Uttarakhand high court dismissed the public interest litigation filed by Bhartiya Janta Party MP Subramanian Swamy in February 2020 opposing the formation of 'Char Dham Devsthanam Board' under a law to govern the Char Dham and 51 other temples.