Snana Jatra: Khuntia Nijog Submits List Of 10 Sevayats

Puri: While the Shree Jagannath Temple Administration (SJTA) has accepted the list of 150 Daitapati sevayats and decided to conduct COVID-19 test ahead of the June 5 Snana Jatra, the Khuntia sevayat body (Nijog) on Tuesday submitted a list of 10 sevayats to the temple administration.

The Khuntia Nijog has told the media that as the temple administration has decided to conduct the rituals of the Lords with strict adherence to social distancing guidelines in view of the outbreak of COVID-19, it has submitted the list of 10 sevayats as against 40.

The main duty of the Khuntia sevayats is to pronounce the Manima Daka (address the Lords in loud voice) and keep a watch on the deities.

Stating that the temple administration has received the list of 10 Khuntia sevayats who will be in charge of the bathing (Snana) rituals, the Unnayan Prasasak (development administrator) of SJTA, Ajay Jena said that the remaining sevayats of the nine Nijogs associated with the Snana rituals of the Lords will submit the list by May 27.

He said after the COVID test of sevayats of 10 Nijogs, they will be allowed to participate in the Snana rituals of the Lords.

COVID test of Daitapati sevayats will be held on May 27 and 28 while the Garabadu sevayats will undergo the test on May 29 and 30.

Jena further said that the sevayats will have to remain in home quarantine for 14 days from the date of the collection of their swabs for which they will give undertaking to the temple administration.

It may be noted that while over 2000 sevayats participate in the Snana rituals of the Lords every year, about one-fourth of their number will take part this year due to the prevailing coronavirus pandemic.

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