**Bhubaneswar**: Tensions sparked in front of ISKCON temple on NH-16 today noon, after the police and disciples got into a scuffle during the demolition drive of the ‘samadhi peeth’ carried out by a joint enforcement squad of Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation (BMC) and Bhubaneswar Development Authority (BDA).
ISKCON devotees rallied around the ‘samadhi peeth’ when the authorities brought in the heavy vehicles to demolish the religious memorial. Amidst chants of ‘Hare Ram Hare Krishna’ the disciples vehemently protested the demolition drive and allegedly pelted stones at the authorities and the machinery.
In a response, to bring the agitation to a halt and disperse the mob, two platoons of police were deployed who aggressively charged lathis at the protestors. According to reports, in this clash of saffron clad devotees and khaki attired police personnel, several people including some locals have sustained serious injuries.
Seven ISKCON followers, both male and female, have sustained injuries in the scuffle. Even the police personnel had to disperse them forcibly from the protest spot.
Objecting to ‘unauthorised’ constructions that caused waterlogging on NH-16, the authorities have started the demolition work of the area encroached by ISKCON temple here on Saturday.
Notably, the authorities of BMC had earlier served show cause notices to the ISKCON Temple and Hotel Presidency managements respectively on July 25.
The show cause issued to the ISKCON Temple president mentions, “It has come to the notice that the ISKCON Temple has unauthorisedly and illegally encroached the land earmarked as Right of Way adjoining NH-5 and constructed shops thereon. Encroachment of the space also prevents flow of storm water and causes insanitary condition in the area.”
**Also Read:** [BMC-BDA Joint Enforcement Squad Demolishes Bhubaneswar ISKCON Temple’s Illegal Encroachment](https://www.ommcomnews.com/public/bmc-bda-joint-enforcement-squad-demolishes-bhubaneswar-iskcon-temple-s-illegal-encroachment)
**Also Read:** [Maoist Martyrs’ Week: Bus Services Stalled & Security Tightened In Malkangiri](https://www.ommcomnews.com/public/maoist-martyrs-week-bus-services-stalled-security-tightened-in-malkangiri)