Pa­tra moves SC seek­ing changes in Rath Ya­tra or­der

Hindustan Times (Jalandhar) - - HTSPOTLIGH­T - HT Correspond­ent let­ters@hin­dus­tan­

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 ,

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