Stone slab falls in Jagannath Temple

Puri: A stone slab weighing a tonne loosened and fell from the roof of the western entrance of the 800-year-old Sri Jagannath temple on Tuesday with debris from it injuring a visually challenged man, official sources said.

The stone slab which fell at 11:30 am slid down from near the 'Dadhi Nauti' and was loose for quite some time, chief temple administrator, Pradip Kumar Mohapatra said.

He said the visually challenged man sustained minor injury and was safe.

Claiming that there was no threat to the Sri Jagannath temple, Mohapatra said he had written to the Archeological Survey of India (ASI), which is in charge of maintenance of the 12th century shrine, to make a visit immediately and file a report.

In Bhubaneswar, Chief Secretary B K Patnaik said "The chief minister has written to the Union Culture minister on the safety of the temple."

Stating that government was aware of the development, Patnaik told reporters, "obviously, ASI is accountable as it has been in charge of conservation of the temple for a long time."