Halt Puri Heritage Corridor Project Till Disposal Of HC Case: INTACH Urges Odisha CM

OB Bureau

Bhubaneswar: Amid the controversy over Puri Heritage Corridor, the state convener of Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage (INTACH) has appealed to Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik for a temporary suspension of all activities in the excavated area near the Jagannath Temple in the Pilgrim Town.

In a letter to the Chief Minister, State Convener A B Tripathy said that pending the disposal of the matter in the Orissa High Court, and the political slugfest with rumours flying thick and fast, the devotees of Lord Jagannath are confused, apprehensive and hurt.

“Intach is above all political predilections and is in a unique position of feeling the pulse of the people through its twelve chapters spread through the length and breadth of the State…Our feedback is that people are hurt  as their supreme deity Lord Jagannath’s abode is in controversy which has gone to the highest courts for a decision.”

In his letter, he has appealed for a halt in the ongoing work pending the disposal of the case which will assuage the feelings of the apprehensive devotees and will be a healing touch.

On Monday, the HC directed the state government to submit its reply to the ASI affidavit. which stated that the work on the heritage corridor was being carried out without valid permission and might have caused damage to the 12th-century temple, by June 20 and posted the next hearing for June 22. The court, however, allowed the government with continue with the work.

Notably, another case was filed in connection with the project at the 800-year-old Jagannath Temple and notices were issued to the Ministry of Culture, the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) and eight other parties seeking their stand on the alleged illegality in the construction work of the project which “might have caused damage to the temple” by Civil Judge (Senior Division) PK Routray on Friday.

OB Bureau

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