State

Odisha CM expresses gratitude to people involved in organising Rath Yatra

Bhubaneswar: Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Friday expressed gratitude to the persons involved in organising the Rath Yatra in Puri.

"I would like to thank 'sevayats' (priests), police, district administration and all who were involved in organising the Rath Yatra. A truly great job was done. I would like the same spirit to be inculcated in the return journey, Bahuda Yatra," Patnaik said.

The annual Jagannath Rath Yatra commenced on June 23 in Puri without devotees, amid the coronavirus pandemic and a curfew in Puri.

The yatra celebrates the annual journey of Lord Jagannath and his two siblings from the 12th-century Jagannath Temple to Gundicha Temple, some 2.5 kilometres away. The Gundicha Temple is their aunt's home.

On June 22, the Supreme Court allowed the annual yatra to be held with the coordination of the Jagannath Temple committee, Odisha and central government without compromising with the health issues pertaining to COVID-19. The court had earlier put a stay on the chariot festival. 

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