The fourth death anniversary of VHP leader Lakshmanananda Saraswati was observed on Thursday in Kandhamal district amid tight security.
Coinciding with Janmastami celebrations, his disciples observed the day as ‘Dharma Rakshya Divas’.
Keeping the 2008 violence in view, the State Government deployed armed forces at Jaleshpeta and Chakapada, where the slain seer had established ashrams.
“Security was tightened at all the vulnerable places. Patrols, searches and frisking were made at many places including the entry points of the district,” said G P Behera, DSP, Kandhamal.
Security was tightened at some churches in the district to avoid any untoward incident.
Saraswati along with four associates were killed by unidentified gunmen while celebrating Janmastami at Jalespeta ashram on August 23, 2008. The killing had triggered large-scale violence in Kandhamal and other parts of the State.
At least 38 people were killed and thousands became homeless in the riots that followed.