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Puri violence: 86 persons arrested so far, says SP

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Puri: Total 86 persons have been arrested in connection with violence during Puri bandh on October 3, informed Puri SP Sarthak Sarangi here today.

The CCTV footage verification is underway. We will take action on the basis of CCTV footage as per the law against those who might have been involved in the violence, damaging public property, loot or breaking the barricade, he told media reporters.

Meanwhile, five policemen, including one havildar and four constables were placed under suspension for negligence in discharging duties during the bandh in the pilgrim city when the irate mob ransacked the house of Revenue Minister Maheswar Mohanty.

Worth mentioning, police have registered cases against some servitors of Srimandir for their alleged involvement in the violence.

Fifteen key persons including Jagannath Sena convener Priyadarshan Patnaik and Daitapati and Congress leader Binayak Das Mohapatra were booked under various sections of IPC.

Besides, cases were registered at Singhadwara Police Station against the servitors and BJP workers Somnath Khuntia and Bhawani Das Mohapatra, servitors Damodar Das Mohapatra, Damodar Mahasuar and Gopal Panda and lawyer Prasanna Dash. They were reportedly among the protestors who fuelled violence on Oct 3 in the pilgrim town. They all are booked following probe based on CCTV footage.

Police initiated action to arrest and register cases against the protestors after the Supreme Court-appointed amicus curiae expressed displeasure over the temple administration for violence in holy place.

Notably, on October 3, Jagannath Sena activists, devotees and servitors took to streets protesting the queue system at the centuries old Jagannath temple. The mob had vandalized all barricades on the Bada Danda (Grand Road) and ransacked the office of Shree Jagannath Temple Administration (SJTA) and residence of the Minister.