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Odisha CS Writes to Union Culture Secy Demanding Withdrawal of NMA Bylaws

Bhubaneswar: Odisha Chief Secretary Suresh Chandra Mahapatra today wrote Raghvendra Singh, Secretary, Ministry of Culture demanding withdrawal of bylaws issued by National Monument Authority (NMA) for Ananta Basudev and Brahmeswar temples of Ekamra Kshetra here.

There was serious discontentment from sevayats, devotees, people at large and Peoples’ Representatives against this publication as these temples host living deities and the publication was done without any consultation with stake holders.

In view of this, the heritage byelaws relating to Shree Jagannath Temple, Puri have been withdrawn by NMA. However, draft notification relating to Ekamra Kshetra temples are still in force causing distress to the sevayat community, people at large and devotees, the letter reads.

The Temple Trust Board and Endowment Commissioner have written to the Member Secretary, NMA for immediate withdrawal of the draft notification relating to Ekamra Kshetra.

There have been frequent agitations regarding the non-withdrawal of these draft notifications and there is serious apprehension that this will lead to widespread agitation and disturb the day to day religious rituals in the temples.

This kind of atmosphere in temples is bound to hurt the religious sentiments of lakhs of devotees. The largest congregation of devotees in Ekarnra Kshetra will happen on March 11 on the occasion of Maha Shiv Ratri festival.

It is important to have a peaceful atmosphere and full cooperation of sevayats for conducting this Annual Maha Shivratri festival in which lakhs of devotees from all over the state participate.

In view of the same, the State Government strongly recommends immediate withdrawal of the draft heritage bye laws relating to the aforesaid temples, the Odisha Chief Secretary stated.

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