Bhubaneswar, Jan. 17: Devotees of Lord Jagannath in Calcutta will be able to contribute for the upkeep of the 12th century temple in Puri and pay respects to the Lord from the city itself.
The Orissa government has decided to place hundis (donation boxes) at Utkal Bhavan in Calcutta and Orissa Bhavan in New Delhi. The move is expected to breathe a new life into the cash-starved temple, one of the holiest Hindu places of worship.
The decision to keep donation boxes in Calcutta and New Delhi was taken at a meeting of the Jagannath Temple Foundation Fund Committee, chaired by Orissa chief minister Naveen Patnaik, here yesterday.
The growing expenditure on the maintenance of the temple had worried its administration as well as the Orissa government.
The meeting decided to issue appeals through newspapers to the devotees of Lord Jagannath across the country to donate generously for the cause besides installing the hundis. Along with the two metros, a box will also be placed in Bhubaneswar. The mahaprasad of the Lord and literature on the Jagannath cult will be kept for sale.
The meeting also decided that the state government would provide Rs 15 lakh annually to the Sri Jagannath Sanskrit University directly. Earlier, 45 per cent of the interest on funds collected from the temple hundi were used for its maintenance.