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Archaeological Survey of India team inspects Jagannath temple

The visit came amidst a controversy triggered by allegations that rules and regulation under AMASR have been violated during construction work
Shree Jagannath temple in Puri.
Shree Jagannath temple in Puri.
File photo

Our Correspondent   |   Bhubaneswar   |   Published 02.05.22, 02:22 AM

A team of Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) on Sunday inspected the ongoing work around the 12th century Shree Jagannath Temple under the Puri Shri Mandir Heritage Corridor Project.

The visit came amidst a controversy triggered by allegations that rules and regulation under the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Sites and Remains Act (AMASR) have been violated during the construction of work.

The Opposition has alleged that the work poses a threat to the Jagannath Temple itself. A PIL has already been filed on the issue in the high court challenging the work. Acting on the PIL,  Orissa High Court has asked the ASI to submit an affidavit by May 7 on the status of the ongoing heritage corridor project.

The ASI team that inspected the work comprised its regional director Dillip Kumar Khamari, superintending archaeologist (Bhubaneswar Circle) Arun Malik and other officials.

Puri collector Samarth Verma also accompanied the team. “We will submit our observation to the high court,” said a member of the ASI team.

The Odisha government in 2019 had started a project named “ Puri Heritage Corridor Project.” to transform the Holy town of Puri into an international place of Heritage. 

However, social activists as well as  Opposition parties alleged that the work being done under Puri Heritage Corridor Project” was illegal as it violated AMASR Act, 1958, which prohibits new constructions within 100 metres radius of a national protected monument.

In another development, a transgender died after failing off the gumuta (top wall at the entrance to the temple) of the Jagannath Temple.

Doctors said she had a fractured on her skull and also sustained deep injuries on  the other parts of the body. It is yet to be ascertained whether she had jumped off the wall to commit suicide or accidentally fell off it.



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