Vandalisation Of Puri Srimandir Chulhas: 4 JTP Personnel, Servitors Questioned By Police

Puri: The Singhadwar police questioned four Jagannath Temple Police (JTP) personnel and some servitors in connection with the alleged vandalisation of over 40 chulhas (earthen ovens) at the Rosaghara (kitchen) of the temple.

One of the four JTP personnel was deployed at the Bata Agana and Nata Mandapa while the other three had allegedly allowed the suspect to leave the temple on the fateful day. The four were on duty from 10 pm of April 2 till the morning of April 3.

Showing the photo of the suspect which was captured on CCTV cameras, the Singhadwar police also questioned some servitors who were involved in the Sandhya Dhupa rituals at the temple on the day of the incident.

On the other hand, the Shree Jagannath Temple Administration (SJTA) has issued show cause notice to the four JTP personnel seeking reply regarding the circumstances under which the untoward incident took place.

More than 40 chulhas at the Rosaghara were allegedly damaged on April 2 night, raising serious questions over the security at the shrine. The chulhas were used for cooking Mahaprasad at the grand kitchen.

Chief Secretary Suresh Chandra Mahapatra and DGP Sunil Bansal visited Puri yesterday to take stock of the situation.

After holding discussion with Puri Collector Samarth Verma and SP K Vishal Singh on the issue, the DGP said a person has been identified and was being questioned over his presence inside the temple when the unfortunate incident took place.

The SJTA has lodged a complaint with the Singhadwar police in this connection. Police have registered a case under sections 427, 295 and 295 (A) of the IPC and 30 (A) and 4 (b) of the Shree Jagannath Temple Act.

Puri SP has constituted a five-member team to probe the matter.

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