Puri: The Chief Administrator of Shree Jagannath Temple Administration (SJTA), Krishan Kumar has written to PK Mohapatra, the Additional Chief Secretary, Health department demanding ‘Covid Warriors’ status for all employees of the body.
“The employees of the Shree Jagannath Temple Administration, Puri, are involved in discharging various duties during this Covid-19 pandemic. These include taking care of the Covid-19 positive persons in the Institutional Isolation Facility (lIF) at Nilachal Bhakta Nivas and assisting the medical teams in vaccination of sevayats and employees. They are also continuously exposing themselves to the public while assisting in various rituals both inside and outside the temple. They are also helping out in the boarding, lodging and accommodation of Ratha Khala sevaks etc,” Kumar wrote in his letter to the Odisha government.
In the letter he also requested that all officials of SJTA should be declared as Covid warriors for extension of benefits as decided by the State government from time to time.
In the letter, the chief administrator, SJTA, also requested the Additional Chief Secretary for financial assistance as per norms for next of kin of two personnel of Jagannath Temple Police of SJTA – Pruthimanyu Dash (58) and Pramod Kumar Dash (59) – who lost their lives due to Covid-19 in April this year.