Three-member panel to probe Lord Balabhadra idol fall during Rath yatra

Tuesday’s mishap left 12 servitors injured. Of them, 11 were discharged and one is under observation.
Image used for representation.
Image used for representation.

PURI/BHUBANESWAR: The Shree Jagannath Temple managing committee on Wednesday constituted a three-member panel to inquire into the reasons that led to the slipping of Lord Balabhadra on the ‘charamala’ of the chariot during ‘Adapa Bije Pahandi’ on Tuesday.

The incident was discussed at the managing committee meeting which was chaired by Gajapati Maharaj Dibyasingha Deb. The committee, comprising an additional district magistrate, temple administrator (development) and a deputy superintendent rank officer, will submit its report to the managing committee within 10 days after Niladri Bije.

“The committee will examine the drone footage and videos of the Pahandi to identify if all the persons present on the chariot at that time were designated sevayats or outsiders,” said the chief administrator of the temple Vir Vikram Yadav.

Speaking to mediapersons after the meeting, Gajapati Maharaj Dibyasingha Deb said Tuesday’s incident has left all Odias shocked and disturbed.

“Such an incident had never been seen in the past. The three-member committee will examine why and under what circumstances this happened. The temple administration has been asked to take steps to prevent such incidents during the upcoming Bahuda and Niladri Bije,” he said.

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Stating that one of the reasons of the mishap was overcrowding of sevayats on the chariots, Gajapati said the servitors have realised this and will ensure such incidents do not recur. Tuesday’s mishap left 12 servitors injured. Of them, 11 were discharged and one is under observation.

At the meeting, the proposal and SOPs framed by Justice Biswanath Rath Commission on reopening of the Srimandir’s Ratna Bhandar were placed. The managing committee discussed the SOPs in detail and made some new changes, said Yadav, adding it will be sent to the state government for approval.

“We have endorsed the proposal by the Justice Rath Commission to open the Ratna Bhandar on July 14. The state government will take a final call on it,” he said.

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