Patra moves SC seeking changes in Rath Yatra order
NEWDELHI: Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) spokesperson, Sambit Patra approached the Supreme Court on Sunday seeking a modification of the top court’s June 18 order which had barred the annual Hindu festival of Rath Yatra at Jagannath temple in Puri this year in view of Covid-19 pandemic.
Patra, who himself was hospitalised for coronavirus symptoms and later discharged, prayed that the Rath Yatra should be allowed to be held without public participation. He submitted that the Ratha Yatra can be conducted by employing the services of Lord Jagannath’s 800 sevayats, who are persons who perform the ritual services of Lord Jagannath and other deities at the Puri Jagannath temple.
At least a dozen such applications including one by Janardhan Pattajoshi Mohapatra, who is the hereditary chief servitor of Lord Jagannatha of the Jagannatha Temple, are already pending before the apex court seeking modification of its order. These applications will be heard in chambers by a single-judge bench of justice S Ravindra Bhat at 11 am on Monday.
The Rath Yatra is a festival associated with Lord Jagannatha. It was scheduled to commence this year on June 23. The SC had ordered a stay on the festival and activities associated with it this year stating that allowing the same would lead to a congregation more than 10 lakh devotees in violation of distancing norms ,