Puri: Refuting media reports about a flag atop the Jagannath Temple catching fire on Thursday night, a senior sevayat said that those were the wicks which were blown away by strong winds from the lamp burning atop the temple.
The incident had fueled apprehensions of bad omen.
Senior Chunara sevayat Dr Sarat Chandra Mohanty told a local media channel that the sevatats, on the occasion of the Papa Mochana Ekadasai, had performed Sandhya Alati rituals on the kadali basunga (banana leaf sheath) in the evening. They then took the Alati (wicks applied with camphor) with basunga to Aanlabedha atop the temple at 7.40 pm. Later, they put the alati in the Mahadeep filled with wicks and ghee. Soon, strong winds began to blow and carried away the wicks from the Mahadeep. Some people watching this thought that the temple flag had caught fire, he said.
“As per the temple tradition, no other flag except the Patitapabana of the Lords is tied to the Neelachakra on Ekadasi,” Mohanty added.
He further said that the flag which people saw fluttering beside the fire was a shredded one, which had got stuck atop the temple and they were unable to remove earlier.
Mohanty also said that the Chunara sevayats keep the Sandhya Alati of the Lords atop the temple as Mahadeep during Ekadasi to bless the Puri Gajapati Maharaja and wish for the well-being of the people of the world.
The Shree Jagannath Temple Administration is yet to issue a statement on the incident.