Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Puri, Dec 15:
Temporary employees of the Shree Jagannath Temple in Odisha’s pilgrim town of Puri are on an indefinite dharna in front of the Shree Jagannath Temple Administration (SJTA) office beginning today demanding fulfillment of their two-point charter of demands.
The 243 temporary employees of the temple are demanding regularization of their jobs and a hike in their wages. They have however, made it clear that their agitation will in no way affect the daily rituals of the Lords.
Apart from the Class III and Class IV employees of the temple, employees engaged as watch and ward staff have also joined the agitation.
Those on dharna were seen with placards in their hands and were shouting slogans in support of their demands.
“We are demanding a minimum salary of Rs 15,000 for Class III employees and Rs 13,000 for Class IV employees. We will continue with our dharna indefinitely till the government agrees to fulfill our demands. But we wish to make it clear that the rituals of the Lords will not be affected by our dharna. We want a commitment from the government in writing,” said Durga Madhab Mishra, president of Shree Mandir Employees Association.