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Rath Yatra Banned At All Places In Odisha except Puri

Bhubaneswar: 10/6/21:In the wake of the second wave of the Covid-19, Odisha government on Thursday decided to ban the much-awaited annual RathYatra festival dedicated to Lord Jagannath at all places in the State except Puri, the prime abode of the Lord.

Odisha SRC and Development Commissioner Pradeep Jena made the major announcement today saying that the nine-day long sojourn of the Holy Trinity which begins from July 12 this year will be held in Puri with strict adherence to guidelines laid out by the Supreme Court and the Odisha government in 2020 when the festival was held sans devotees for the first time in its centuries-long history.

Odisha government has always given supreme importance to the safety and well-being of the public. With the second wave of Covid pandemic continuing its slow descent and threat of a possible third surge looming, public gathering during the grand festival which attracts lakhs of devotees from all around the world needs to be curbed. This apart, since it is a mass festival celebrated with much fanfare across Odisha and outside, restrictions on public participation in the celebration are necessary, the SRC said during a press briefing.

Here are the major points to note:-

  • Public participation will not be allowed during the Rath Yatra in Puri
  • Servitors testing (RTPCR) Covid negative or those fully vaccinated will be allowed to participate in the rituals
  • As per the Supreme Court’s guidelines, only 500 servitors will be allowed to pull each chariot during the festival
  • The curfew will be clamped in Puri for the festival and only essential and emergency services will be allowed. Vehicular movement to and from Puri will be restricted during Rath Yatra.
  • Direct live telecast of the festival will be facilitated to interested media outlets and broadcasters by the I&PR department of Odisha government
  • At all other Lord Jagannath shrines across Odisha, only rituals will be conducted within the premises of the temples and public will not be allowed to participate

About Editor in chief

Ashok Palit has completed his graduation from Upendranath College Soro, Balasore and post graduation from Utkal University in Odia Language and literture.. He has also carved out a niche for himself as a scribe of eminence after joining the profession in 1988. He is also an independent media production professional. He brings loads of experience to Advanced Media, Ashok Palit as a cineaste has been active in film criticism for over three decades. As a film society activist, he soared to eminence for his profound commitment to the art film appreciation and aesthetics of cinema. His mode of discourse is often erudite but always lucid and comprehensible marked by a perfect acumen so rare in the field. A film aesthete with an immense fond of critical sensibilities, he wrote about growth and development of odia cinema in New Indian Express, The Times of India, The Hindustan Times, The Asian Age and Screen. He has been working as an Editor for Cine Samaya from 2002-2004.. He had made solid contribution on cinema in many odia Dailies and weekly such as Samaj, Prajatantra, Dharatri, Samaya, Satabadi, and weekly Samaya.

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