Rath Yatra: 10 Sevayats, Several Devotees Injured In Police Canecharge

Puri, July 4 : At least 10 "sevayats" (priests) and some devotees were injured here today, in alleged cane-charge by police to control the swelling crowd of devotees atop "Nandighosh", the chariot of Lord Jagannath."We
rath yatra 10 sevayats several devotees injured...
PTI July 04, 2011 14:28 IST

Puri, July 4 : At least 10 "sevayats" (priests) and some devotees were injured here today, in alleged cane-charge by police to control the swelling crowd of devotees atop "Nandighosh", the chariot of Lord Jagannath.

"We have shifted the police personnel deployed near the chariot after the incident and discussion with the priests was continuing to sort out the matter," Superintendent of Police, Puri, Amitendra Nath Sinha said.

The incident occurred today during the "Abakash" ritual of Lord Jagannath as a large number of devotees climbed atop "Nandighosh" and jostled for a glimpse of the deity, police sources said.

In a departure from centuries old tradition, the Jagannath temple administration had prepared a ladder made of aluminium to enable the devotees climb up the three majestic chariots and have a glimpse of the deities.

Following the incident, public darshan atop the three chariots came to a standstill and priests stopped the rituals briefly before the "Pahandi" of deities into Gundicha temple.

However, the rituals were resumed after intervention of the district, temple and police administration, while priests demanded stern action against guilty policemen.

There was stampede-like situation on Sunday during the main Rath Yatra. One person died of heart attack during the stampede. PTI

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