Puri: The first preparation meeting of the co-ordination committee for Rath Yatra was hosted today. While district administration, Revenue Divisional Commissioner (RDC) and other officials of temple administration were present at the meeting, many sevayats were missing. Rath Yatra will begin from June 25 this year.
With the Niladri Bije fiasco still looming large over the strenuous relationship between Temple Administration and Daita Nijog and sevayats, the missing members of the sevayat community in the meeting could even make an impact on the smooth conduct of Rath Yatra arrangements.
However, the administration officials said there is no such issue to be worried about and like last year the event will be hosted successfully.
“Last year the Rath Yatra of Lord Jagannath was successfully organised. We are sure we will get co-operation of sevayats and Daita Nijog and host the event smoothly this year,” said RDC central division, AB Ota.
Collector Arvind Agarwal and various officials of temple and district administration were present on the occasion. BUt among sevayats only handful attended the first of the three meetings of the co-ordination committee held every year for Rath Yatra preparation while the final review is conducted by the Chief Minister.
One of the senior most daitapatis, Ramachandra Dasmohapatra outrightly said that the disciplinary action against sevayats during Niladri Bije has tainted the sevayat community and to support the community members he and other senior daitapatis missed the preparatory meeting. He also alleged that the temple administration probably did not want them to attend the meeting and hence sent them letters for the meeting late last night.