Two Jagannath Temple Sevayats Suspended For ‘Escorting’ MLA To Snana Mandap

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Puri: The Shree Jagannath Temple Administration (SJTA) on Monday suspended two sevayats for alleged violation of rules during Snana Purnima rituals of the sibling deities in Puri on June 17.

Somnath Khuntia and Rajaram Khuntia have been placed under suspension and barred from performing any duty in the temple. The decision was taken on the basis of CCTV footage, in which they were seen escorting local MLA Jayant Sarangi to the Snana Mandap at around 11 am, the notification said.

It may be mentioned here that entry of devotees into the Snana Mandap is strictly prohibited during the rituals.

The SJTA had earlier served show cause notices on some servitors and had asked the Puri MLA to justify his action.

Terming the notice served by the temple administration on him as ‘utterly rubbish’, the MLA said he had not gone to the Snana Mandap. “I had offered my prayer to the deities at the stairs of the Snana Mandap and never touched the deities. If the temple administration had framed the rules, it should have restrained me and the sevayats. The temple administration officials and the temple police were present near the Snana Mandap. But none of them apprised me of the rules. As we had no information, how can we know this? Are we the Gods?” Sarangi wondered.

He further said that he will reply to the show cause notice very soon.




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