Niladri Bije debacle: Court grants conditional bail to servitor


Puri: Puri Additional District Judge I Court on Thursday granted conditional bail to arrested servitor Kashinath Khuntia on submission of Rs. 30,000 bond and two bailers.

kashinath khuntia

Kashinath was arrested on October 14 on charges of assaulting Puri Collector Arvind Agarwal, other media persons and delaying rituals during Niladri Bije rites of Lord Jagannath earlier this June on eve of Rath Yatra.

It is to be noted that Khuntia had interim protection of High Court till October 26 which expired on Wednesday.

On the other hand, High Court has stayed on the NBW and proclamation order issued by the lower court against the accused Damodar Mahasuar and asked him to depose before investigating officer and cooperate in the investigation process.

Damodar is still to be traced and is among four others who are absconding from police’s dragnet.

Notably, Khuntia was among eight others who were declared absconders after they did not depose before the police in spite of regular warnings after the controversial incident on Niladri Bije.

Notably, during the deities home coming ritual otherwise known as Niladri Bije, some servitors including Khuntia opposed Collector’s protest against of a senior servitor Damodar Mahasuar daughter’s chariot climbing and touching of deities in spite of a no touch ban.

This protests led to an altercation between the collector and other sevayats leading to delay of pahandi of Lord Sudarsan by some hours. During the scuffle the servitors also tussled with some media persons.

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