Congress Holds ‘Sankirtan Satyagrah’ In Odisha Demanding Opening Of 4 Gates Of Puri Jagannath Temple

Bhubaneswar: Intensifying the demand for opening of all four gates and Ratna Bhandar of Shree Jagannath Temple in Puri, Congress launched a ‘Sankirtan Satyagrah’ across Odisha on Thursday.

Party workers and leaders launched the agitation near Jagannath temples in different places and at all the municipalities and NACs across the state. Party members held the Satyagrah in front of the Congress Bhavan in Bhubaneswar by placing the idols of the Holy Trinity.

Playing cymbals and mridangam, the Congress leaders staged protest to press for the demands.
Similarly, activists of the Puri unit of the party staged a demonstration in front of the Singhadwara of the 12th century shrine and performed sankirtan as a mark of protest.

The protesters said that the main demand is for opening of all four gates of Jagannath Temple to avoid the huge rush at the Singhadwara. Devotees are now made to suffer by standing in long queues that stretch till Badasankha.

The agitation is also aimed to press for opening the Ratna Bhandar of Srimandir and complete inventory of the precious gems and jewellery inside the treasury, said a Congress leader.

They also sought steps to return the land belonging to common people which had been acquired for a project in Puri.

Claiming that the state government had enacted a drama about the keys of the Ratna Bhandar having gone missing, they said the Ratna Bhandar must be opened and necessary repair work done. The government should make public details of the valuables stored inside the temple treasury, they said.

It may be recalled that the Congress had earlier taken out a rally in Puri on October 16 and handed over a memorandum to the Chief of Shree Jagannath Temple Administration (SJTA) demanding reopening of the four doors of the Srimandir. But the SJTA did not take any steps in this connection, prompting the party to hold another protest today.

The district administration has maintained that all the doors cannot be opened now due to the construction work under the heritage corridor project.

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