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Since 1st March, 1999
 
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Shrine firm on slaughter

Dumka, Nov. 9: The Baidyanath Dham temple management has resolved to continue the tradition of animal sacrifice in the Deoghar shrine, calling for the resignation of a board member who had last month pleaded before high court seeking a ban on the age-old practice.

Following a stormy meeting yesterday, the first since the filing of a case in Jharkhand High Court, the Baba Baidyanath Temple Management Board also decided to approach the court for the removal of Dilip Jairath.

Jairath, a member of the board who appeared as counsel for a petitioner in high court on October 6, faced the wrath of the others during the meeting presided over by chairperson T.P. Sinha.

K.N. Jha, a senior member of the management board, told The Telegraph they took a dim view of Jairath, considering his unorthodox stance.

Jairath should himself resign from the board on moral grounds, as he is not sticking to the tradition of Baidyanath Dham, Jha said.

The high court, which served a notice to the temple management for their stance, is due to hear the case after Diwali. The board also resolved to take steps for the convenience of pilgrims arriving in Deoghar to offer puja at Baidyanath Dham, one of 12 jyotirlingams and 51 shakti peethas.

Deoghar deputy commissioner (DC) Rahul Purwar, also the ex-officio secretary of the temple management board, said they planned to control crowd and issue coupons specifying time slot for entry to the temple at Dumma itself, 10km away on the Bihar-Jharkhand border, during Shrawani Mela.

The pilgrims normally have to wait for hours for their turn during Shrawani Mela and other major events.

The DC said the board was also mulling over offering online booking facility to pilgrims looking for shighra darshan tickets.