Odisha

SJTA Chief Issues Show Cause To ASI For Sensitive Photo Leakage, Asks For Compliance In 3 Days

**Bhubaneswar: ** Citing leakage of sensitive photograph of Shree Jagannath Temple at Puri in the public domain as serious issues and matter of concern, Shree Jagannath Temple Administration (SJTA) chief administrator on Wednesday issued show cause to the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) and urged to furnish compliance within three days.

In his letter to the Superintending Archaeologist of Archaeological Survey of India, Bhubaneswar Circle, SJTA chief administrator Pradeep Kumar Jena mentioned, “One of the scientists from CMFRI engaged in ASI to advise on improving the ventilation system inside Garvagriha of Shree Jagannath Temple, Puri has posted some photographs of the inside of Garvagriha in the public domain in Facebook. This has resulted in a lot of hue and cry in the media, among the Sevayats and in the public. This is a serious issue relating to safety and security of the temple.”

“You are aware that only ASI has been authorized to take photographs inside the temple premises which are required for the conservation and repair work and no other organization or person are allowed to take any such photograph without prior permission of Temple Administration. You are also aware that any such photograph shall only be used for documentation of the conservation work and not for sharing in the public domain,” the letter states.

The SJTA chief has also mentioned, “An undertaking from all such organizations/consultants and contractor(s)/agency(s) working for the temple be obtained to restrict such leakages of sensitive photographs in the public domain. Please note that ASI is the custodian of all such photographs of Shree Jagannath Temple and they will only share the photographs to the Temple Administration for record/reference purpose.”

ASI has also been requested to inform SJTA:

1) Under what circumstances the photographs were taken by the scientists of CMFRI and not by the authorized photographer of ASI and who allowed the CMFRI team to share the photographs in the public domain?

2) What action you have taken for such serious lapses of CMFRI team, which creates doubt in the mind of public on the action of ASI in compromising the safety and security of the temple?

3) What mechanism you have put in place in restricting such lapses in future as many organizations of national repute and experts in the field of monument conservation are being engaged by ASI to advise on the restoration of this historic temple?

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