Puri Municipality Asks Vendors To Shift Shops From Grand Road

Puri: Ahead of the Rath Yatra scheduled on June 23, the Puri Municipality on Tuesday directed the vendors to shift their temporary shops from the Bada Danda (Grand Road) by June 19.

The municipality, through public announcement system in the afternoon, asked all street vendors to take their shops along the road from the Jagannath Temple to Sri Gundicha temple to a different place.

From the civic body’s announcement, it is presumed that the state government will give its go-ahead to the Rath Yatra this year amid COVID lockdown, said a senior sevayat of the Jagannath temple.

Earlier in the day, senior Daitapati sevayat Binayak Dasmahapatra, while referring to the suggestion of the Orissa High Court to either use elephants or heavy machinery to pull the chariots, said 2000 sevayats are ready to pull the chariots.

“Long back, the elephants were used to pull the chariots as the Grand Road was full of sand. Now the trained elephants are not available. As far as the use of heavy machinery is concerned, it will violate the temple culture and tradition,” he said.

Expressing the hope that the state government will give its green signal to the Rath Yatra, Jagannath Swain, senior sevayat and Badagrahi of Lord Jagannath, Jagannath Swain said the way the Snana Yatra of the deities was held smoothly, the Rath Yatra will be organised in the same manner with strict adherence to social distancing guidelines.

Also Read: Puri Sevayats Demand Early Announcement Of Rath Yatra Rituals Timing

On the hearing of the case on Rath Yatra by the Supreme Court scheduled on June 18, Swain said the apex court will leave the decision to the government. “The Rath Yatra will be a challenge for the government and we are confident that it will conduct it efficiently. Together with the police, we will pull the chariots,” he pointed out.

Also Read: Odisha Govt Silent on HC Suggestion Of Using Machines, Elephants To Pull Chariots During Puri Rath Yatra

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