Other States

Structures around Puri Jagannath temple torn down

Demolition drive: An earth mover demolishing unauthorised structures around the Jagannath temple, in Puri.

Demolition drive: An earth mover demolishing unauthorised structures around the Jagannath temple, in Puri.   | Photo Credit: PTI

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Order from the Orissa High Court to clear area adjacent to the wall, said authorities

The Puri district administration carried out the demolition of structures flanking Meghanad Prachir, the massive compound wall of the 12th century Shree Jagannath Temple on Monday.

Although the State Cabinet had recently approved a proposal to make land up to 75 metres from the wall encroachment-free, the administration claimed Monday’s drive was not connected with the decision.

“The Archaeological Survey of India had requested us to clear all structures adjacent to Meghanad Prachir and there was an Orissa High Court order in this regard. All private and government structures will be demolished,” said Balwant Singh, Puri District Collector.

“We have taken a decision not to touch old establishments and structures having monument value,” said Mr. Singh.

Hundreds of police personnel, along with magistrates, were deployed to avoid any untoward incident that might have occurred during the demolition drive.

Structures including shoe-stands, shops, toilets, a police outpost and a government information centre were pulled down.

Administration assured that an alternative area will be identified for these establishments.

The centuries-old compound wall is also an ASI protected structure.

As per recent the State, all structures within 75 metres of the Jagannath Temple in Puri would be removed to ensure its safety and security, and for the convenience of the pilgrims.

Submission of reports

The State government had constituted a Commission of Inquiry comprising Justice B.P. Das, a retired judge of the Orissa High Court, on July 23, 2016, to submit a report for the better administration and governance of the temple.

The Commission had submitted two interim reports on April 20, 2017 and December 07, 2017.

The State had proposed to implement certain recommendations of the Commission from the first interim report which relate to the safety and improvement of the temple in the first phase.

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Printable version | Dec 6, 2019 9:42:45 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/structures-around-puri-jagannath-temple-torn-down/article29163047.ece

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