Gajapati meets CM Mohan Charan Majhi over Rath Yatra preparations

The Pilgrim City usually witnesses a mammoth gathering of five lakh to eight lakh on the Rath Yatra day.
Gajapati Dibyasingha Deb along with CM Mohan Charan Majhi and Law minister Prithiviraj Harichandan at Bhubaneswar on Monday
Gajapati Dibyasingha Deb along with CM Mohan Charan Majhi and Law minister Prithiviraj Harichandan at Bhubaneswar on Monday Photo | Express

BHUBANESWAR: Ahead of the final coordination meeting for this year’s Rath Yatra, Puri king Dibyasingha Deb met Chief Minister Mohan Charan Majhi over preparations for the Trinity’s annual festival, on Monday.

After a gap of 53 years, the Rath Yatra this year is coinciding with Netra Utsav and Nabajaubana of the deities on July 7. “Since this is a special occasion, the Gajapati Maharaj discussed the schedule and the timely conduct of all rituals, which are being done as per the 1971 schedule,” said Law minister Prithiviraj Harichandan who also attended the meeting.

Earlier, the Chhattisha Nijog and Srimandir managing committee had approved the schedule of the Rath Yatra which stated that pulling of chariots will begin at 5 pm on July 7. The chariots will reach Gundicha temple a day later and on July 9, the three deities will be taken to the ‘Adapa Mandap’ inside the Gundicha temple.

The Pilgrim City usually witnesses a mammoth gathering of five lakh to eight lakh on the Rath Yatra day. This year, the district administration is expecting more crowds owing to the visit of President Droupadi Murmu and other Union ministers to participate in the festival. The President’s visit and the necessary arrangements being made for the purpose was also discussed between the Gajapati and the chief minister.

Meanwhile, the state government on Monday appointed 90 officers as executive magistrates of Puri for maintenance of law and order during Rath Yatra to Niladri Bije period. On the day, members of Srimandir’s Puja Panda Nijog and Suara Mahasuara Nijog also met the chief minister. The Suara sevayats discussed several issues pertaining to management of Ananda Bazaar of Srimandir and entry of devotees into the temple through its four gates in a disciplined and safe manner.

Besides, resumption of providing ‘Kanika Khechudi Bhoga’ to devotees at three gates of the temple which was stopped by the temple administration in February this year, and hiking the health insurance of Suara sevayats from Rs 5 lakh to Rs 10 lakh was also discussed. “The chief minister gave us a patient hearing and assured us to look into our demands. We invited him to have the Adapa Mandap Bhoga at Gundicha temple,” said Narayan Mahasuara, a senior servitor of the Nijog.

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