Odisha CM speaks with PM on Rath Yatra

Bhubaneswar, April 24 (IANS) Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Friday discussed with Prime Minister Narendra Modi the issue of organising the annual Rath Yatra of Lord Jagannath in Puri, scheduled to be held in June.

Both spoke on phone over the Rath Yatra issue, said sources in the Chief Minister’s Office (CMO). The Rath Yatra is proposed to be held on June 23.

There is uncertainty about the world famous festival in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak. Lakhs of devotees from various parts of the world throng Puri to witness the festival.

An important meeting of Sree Jagannath Temple Managing Committee was held through videoconference on Friday.

After the meeting, Gajapti Maharaja Sri Dibyasingha Deb of Puri said that keeping in view the coronavirus situation, teh decision regarding the Rath Yatra will be taken as per the guidelines issued by the union and state governments after the lockdown ends on May 3.

According to the schedule, the work for the construction of the chariots would begin on April 26.

The Jagannath Temple has remained closed for devotees since March 22. However, the temple rituals are being conducted by the servitors.