BJP youths oppose hotelier bid to take possession  

A scuffle broke out between BJP youth wing workers and supporters of a hotelier over ‘Bhumipujan’ on Bagala Dharmasala land on Tuesday.

Published: 17th February 2021 04:36 AM  |   Last Updated: 17th February 2021 08:27 AM   |  A+A-

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BJP flag (File Photo)

By Express News Service

PURI:  A scuffle broke out between BJP youth wing workers and supporters of a hotelier over ‘Bhumipujan’ on Bagala Dharmasala land on Tuesday. The hotelier, identified as Batakrushna Mudra, was performing the foundation stone laying ceremony on the patch of Dharmasala land provided to him by the district administration when BJP workers reached the spot and raised objection. When Mudra and his supporters resisted, a scuffle broke out between the two groups. However, police rushed to the spot and brought the situation under control.

Mudra said, he bought the plot from the district administration after being allotted one. “I was even provided with the land patta by the authorities. The administration had given permission to perform the foundation stone laying ceremony on Tuesday,” he said. The district administration had sold plots of Dharmasala land to six hoteliers who were displaced due to the 75-metre heritage corridor being developed around the Meghanad Prachir of Srimandir. 

The BJP workers, however, alleged that as a case challenging the sale of the dharmasala land is pending in Orissa High Court, administration cannot handover any plot to businessmen. Last year, BJP had staged dharna for 28 days demanding reconstruction of the dharmasala and cancellation of sale deeds on the ground that the land on which the historic structure stood was a donated property and the administration was only a caretaker of it. 

Activist Jagannath Bastia, who filed a PIL in the HC challenging the sale of Bagala Dharmasala land, alleged that the administration is willfully violating the law to help powerful persons. “As the case is pending in HC and all opposing parties including the district administration were served notice to file their counter by May 11, 2021, the Sub-Collector in scant regard to the court’s order has given possession of the land to Mudra,” he alleged. Bastia said the matter would be brought to the notice of the HC.

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