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Odisha Nabakalebara: SJTA seeks reports on three deaths


Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, Jul 19:

The Shree Jagannath Temple Administration (SJTA) has sought reports from the police and the hospital authorities on the death of three persons during the Nabakalebara Rath Yatra in Odisha’s holy town Puri on Saturday.

Suresh Mohapatra, chief administrator of the Shree Jagannath Temple Administration (SJTA)
Suresh Mohapatra, chief administrator of the Shree Jagannath Temple Administration (SJTA)

“On the basis of these reports and scrutiny of documents the family members of the deceased persons will be provided with insured amounts,”  Suresh Chandra Mohapatra, chief administrator, SJTA, told the media today.

While two women were killed in stampede like situations near Marichkote square and Hindi Vidyapeeth square on the Bada Danda (Grand Road) during pulling of Lord Balabhadra’ chariot, another person had drowned in the sea.

Meanwhile, the two dead women have been identified as Sushila Samantaray of Pattamundai in Kendrapara district and Nirmala Baral of Nayagarh, sources in the Puri district headquarters hospital said.

Bodies of the deceased have been handed over to their family members, they added.

The condition of the six critically injured who were shifted to SCB Medical College and Hospital at Cuttack is stated to be stable. Four of them are admitted to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) of the hospital.

“Ten out of more than 15 injured on Saturday during the pulling of chariots are undergoing treatment at the district headquarters hospital at Puri and their conditions are also stable”, said chief district medical officer (CDMO) Dr Gyana Ranjan Sahu.

Notably, the Odisha government had included all devotees, temple servitors and government employees under accidental insurance cover of Rs 5 lakh each during Nabakalebara Rath Yatra.

“In case any devotee, temple servitor or employee and government employee dies unnatural death due to terrorist attack, building collapse, stampede and drowning in and around Sri Gundicha temple and areas coming under Puri Municipality, the next of kin would be provided with Rs.5 lakh each,” the SJTA chief administrator had told the media persons on July 14.

He had said that the SJTA has an agreement with the New India Assurance Company for providing insurance coverage to those visiting or staying in Puri.

The insurance cover would remain valid from ‘Netrotsav’ (July 17) to ‘Niladri Bije’ (July 30) of Lord Jagannath and His siblings.