Bhubaneswar: Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Friday spoke to Prime Minister Narendra Modi over phone to discuss the Covid-19 situation in Odisha. Both the leaders also discussed about the annual Rath Yatra (Car festival) of Lord Jagannath.
The world famous Rath Yatra is scheduled to be celebrated on June 23. Given the Covid-19 situation, the consensus seems to be evolving not to hold the event this year.
Notably, Shree Jagannath Temple Administration (SJTA) Chief Administrator Krishan Kumar and Puri district Collector Balwant Singh consulted Puri Shankaracharya Swami Nischalananda Saraswati at his Govardhan mutt on Thursday and sought his opinion whether chariot pulling exercise by lakhs of devotees can be stopped this year.
Sources said the State Government may not hold the annual Rath Yatra of Puri Jagannath temple in grand manner this year. Only a set of rituals related to Rath Yatra will be performed inside the 12th century shrine without the participation of any devotees to check the spread of the infection.
So far, the State has reported 90 Covid-19 positive cases, of which 33 persons have been cured and discharged from hospitals while one person has succumbed to the disease.
The State is now under complete lockdown to prevent further spread of the infection.