PURI: The demolition of Emar mutt that continued for second day on Thursday revealed two unknown structures though no valuables came to light. The operation, which was stopped as evening set in, would be continued on Friday.
The century-old structure was so fragile that 10 excavators engaged in the operation cut through it like a knife on a cake. Most of 30 inch thick building walls were made of mortar, lime and sand. During the demolition, an under-ground basement beneath the front room with three steps and a tunnel door were unearthed. The front room, which contained remnants of grains, is believed to have served as a huge granary. Other rooms were found to be home to a large number of bats. One room reportedly contained a wooden bed and some furniture.
Besides police and magistrates, snake helpline personnel were deployed as the old structures were full of wild grass and bushes.Since it was late in the evening, the administration would examine the findings on Friday, said the official in charge of operation.
Meanwhile, the Mahant continued to remain in his residence in the mutt while demolition was going on. He refused to vacate stating that he had not received any notice and the mutt building was safe. Puri Collector Balwant Singh, Revenue Divisional Commissioner (RDC) Anil Samal and other senior officers of administration tried hard to persuade the Mahant to vacate but he did not budge from his stand.
The Mahant’s stubbornness has given credence to popular belief that huge wealth was stored in the mutt. Anticipating that he may try to smuggle out valuables at night, the administration has deployed hundreds of police personnel to guard the mutt throughout the night.