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Orissa HC directs Ratna Bhandar inspection on Mar 26, 27

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Bhubaneswar: On a decision of the Temple Managing Committee for an inspection of the Ratna Bhandar (storehouse of the deities’ ornaments) before opening of the Jagamohan, the Orissa High Court on Thursday ordered for a joint inspection of the Ratna Bhandar on March 26 and 27.

The ASI, the Temple Managing Committee and the amicus curie would jointly inspect the Ratna Bhandar and report to the court whether the storehouse needs any repair.

Turning down a plea made by the Chief Administrator of Lord Jagannath Temple for opening of the Jagamohan (prayer hall of the shrine) after this year’s Rath Yatra in July, the court ordered the Shree Jagannath Temple Managing Committee to inform the court by March 29 as to when the Jagamohan would be made accessible to devotees.

A Division Bench of the High Court headed by Chief Justice Vineet Saran also turned down a plea made by the temple Chief Administrator regarding a safety certificate from the ASI before opening of the Jagamohan to devotees. “Expressing surprise over such a plea, the court said nowhere the ASI gives any such safety certificates,” informed advocate Ashok Mohapatra, who is representing the petitioner in this matter.

Earlier, temple Chief Administrator Pradeep Kumar Jena had informed the court that the newly-formed managing committee in its meeting held on March 20 has decided for an urgent inspection of the Ratna Bhandar as the storehouse located adjacent to the prayer hall and the sanctum sanctorum was last inspected almost 34 years ago way back in 1984. Precious jewellery and ornaments of the deities are kept here in at least four rooms.

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