Security in place for Puri`s Jagannath return festival

Elaborate security measures have been put in place in Orissa`s temple city of Puri ahead of the return festival of Lord Jagannath and two other deities on Wednesday, an officer said.

Last Updated: Jul 20, 2010, 22:18 PM IST

Puri: Elaborate security measures have been put in place in Orissa`s temple city of Puri ahead of the return festival of Lord Jagannath and two other deities on Wednesday, an officer said.

"We have taken all the necessary measures to prevent any untoward incident. More then 5,000 policemen have been deployed in the city. Besides, large numbers of policemen have been deployed to manage traffic," a police officer told IANS.
The Bahuda Yatra marks the return of Hindu god Jagannath, brother Balabhadra and sister Subhadra from the Gundicha temple to the main Jagannath temple, both in Puri, some 56 km from state capital Bhubaneswar.

He said that closed circuit security cameras have been installed at various places to keep a watch on troublemakers and manage the crowds. Besides, bomb detection and disposal squads and fire tender units are also ready to meet any emergency.

The Rath Yatra marks the annual journey of the three deities from the 12th century Jagannath temple in three splendidly decorated wooden chariots to Gundicha temple, about two kilometers away.

The Bahuda Yatra or the return festival is held nine days after the annual Rath Yatra. The deities return to their abode in the same splendidly decorated chariots which thousands of devotees pull with the help of ropes.

According to the officer, the Bahuda Yatra is expected to draw more then half a million devotees.

The pulling of the chariots is likely to start at about 1 p.m. Wednesday.

-IANS