Bhubaneswar: DGP Abhay issued a new SOP, Friday, informing no police personnel, except officials deployed for checking law and order during the nine-day long Rath Yatra, will be permitted to enter Puri town on the pretext of official duty till July 4.
The decision has been taken in view of the recent incident of an IIC from Jajpur district violating COVID-19 guidelines.
“Possibility of some officers alone or with family visiting Puri on pretext of official work or otherwise for darshan cannot be totally ruled out. Hence, it is hereby laid down that other than officers posted in Puri district and those deputed for L & O duty, no officer will be permitted to go on official duty to Puri till July 4,”said a statement issued by the Police Headquarters, Cuttack with approval from DGP Abhay.
In case of urgency and if the duty cannot be postponed, permission will be taken from state Police Headquarters via ADG (Law and Order) for visit to Puri, the statement added.
Notably, Puri police had arrested the Barchana IIC Deepak Jena, April 20, 2020, for flouting lockdown norms.
Jena had forcefully entered the Jagannath temple in Puri despite the temple being closed due to a nationwide lockdown induced by COVID-19 threat. A servitor of Puri temple also helped him enter into the temple.