Highest Bidding Channel To Be Given Rath Yatra Telecast Rights This Year

Puri: The decision of the Shree Jagannath Temple Administration (SJTA) to accord the rights for the live telecast of this year’s Rath Yatra in Puri year to the highest bidding channel has evoked widespread resentment.

SJTA has decided to bid for the live telecast of the Snana Yatra, Rath Yatra, Bahuda Yatra, Suna Besha, Adharapana and Niladri Bije for which it has asked a number of TV channels to apply by June 10. The highest bidding channel will be given live telecast rights.

The SJTA, in a notification, has said that the TV channels interested for the bidding must have at least 5-years experience in live telecast. The authorised channel will not be allowed to relay the live telecast of the festival in Puri. However, it will be allowed to provide live feed to the national channel Doordarshan free of cost. In any dispute arising on this matter, the decision of the SJTA will be binding.

Asked about the decision of the SJTA, BJP MLA of Puri, Jayant Sarangi said that the temple administration should allow the live telecast rights to all the channels.

Member of the temple’s managing committee Ramachandra Dasmahapatra, said that the temple administration has taken this unilateral decision without consulting the committee.

Senior servitor Damodar Padhani, said that the decision of the temple administration will deeply hurt the religious sentiments of the Hindus. The temple administration has to take the permission of the Chhattisha Nijog. It cannot take such a decision suo motu.

In his reaction, vice-president of the Mukti Mandap Pandit Sabha, Ashok Mahapatra, said that the intention of the temple administration is to select a channel, which will completely remain under its control so that any disruption or irregularities during the festival do not come to the notice of the people.

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