Puri, 27/11: The Supreme Court’s direction for maintenance of cleanliness in the kitchen and Ananda Bazar (mahaprasad market) of Sri Jagannath temple in Puri has been welcomed at all levels.
The apex court’s direction for maintenance of cleanliness in the temple kitchen and Ananda Bazar was one among the 22 directions issued on November 4. It may be noted that Jagannath temple’s kitchen, where there are around 250 chullahs, has the capacity to prepare mahaprasad for upto 1 lakh devotees. So the grand kitchen’s cleanliness has been one of major concerns of the country’s top court. Even Ranjit Kumar, the amicus curiae appointed by the Supreme Court to suggest measures for the reform of the ancient shrine, had raised questions on keeping the materials required for prepration of maha Prasad under the open sky.
Similarly, the Supreme Court has asked to maintain cleanliness in the Ananda Bazar, where maha Prasad is sold and devotees eat maha Prasad there.
The apex court has, therefore, suggested the Archeological Survey of India (ASI), which is responsible for the maintenance of the 12th century monument, to construct roof over the open space in the temple kitchen and Ananda Bazar. The apex court’s this suggestion has been welcomed by the temple servitors and intellectuals.
The top court has also asked the temple administration to pay attention to the maintenance of quality and price of the maha prasad under control as complaints are received about its poor quality and exorbitant price. It has underscored the need to prepare a price list of the maha prasad items and adhere to it.
Last year, a price list was prepared by the Suar Nijog, the set of servitors who prepare and sell maha prasad, in consultation with the temple administration. However, the said price list has not been effective yet.
It is expected that the quality of maha prasad will improve and the cleanliness and discipline will be brought in the temple following the Supreme Court’s directives.
The devotees and the servitors demand that the court’s directives be implemented soon in consultation with all the stake holders.