Puri: The Puri district administration Sunday began demolishing Bada Akhada mutt as Supreme Court appointed Amicus Curiae Ranjit Kumar, Saturday, welcomed the state government attempt to create heritage corridor around Srimandir.
He urged the residents, servitors and devotees to cooperate with the administration which would be beneficial to all. This apart he said at this stage work should not be stopped adding that it has been done with the consent of all stakeholders.
The statement of the Amicus Curiae had bolstered the administration to accomplish their demolition drive to clear 75-metre radius from the Meghanad wall of Srimandir.
At least six excavators along with armed police personnel and ten magistrates were deployed and within six hours entire eighty-five room double story building was razed to the ground.
The mutt building, which is older than two hundred years, was constructed with mortar, sand and limestone powder mixtures. A dozen tippers were pressed into service, shifting the debris from the site.
The small temple inside the mutt complex, its kitchen, gaadi and storeroom were spared by the authority.
Before demolition, Mahant Harinarayan Das shifted along with his disciples to the Niladri Bhakta Nivas, a modern hotel of the temple located alongside the Grand Road.
The mutt, as per arrangements, has been provided land for construction of their new building. The Administration has created a special barricaded passage to facilitate pilgrim movement to the temple.
No untoward incident was reported so far.
“The eviction drive is going on smoothly. The remaining structures of Bada Akhada mutt would be demolished Monday,” said additional collector Binay Kumar Dash.
Sources meanwhile claimed that the administration would demolish Sanachhata mutt, Mangu mutt and a municipality hospital located close to Srimandir.
It is worth mentioning here that the district administration had refrained from demolishing Bada Akhada mutt after facing stiff resistance from sadhus and mutt authorities, September 3.
The administration had earlier declared that it would demolish Bada Akhada mutt September 3 after two days’ of halt in the eviction drive starting from September 1.
In accordance with its plan, the administration had sent bulldozers, earthmovers and several hundred security personnel to raze the mutt.
However, the administration could not carry out the eviction as sadhus from several places across the country under the banner of Akhila Bharatiya Santha Samiti gathered at the mutt and held a demonstration.
The sadhus had claimed that the Endowment Commissioner had not declared Bada Akhada mutt as unsafe.