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Ratna Bhandar report:Orissa HC adjourns hearing

Cuttack, The Orissa High Court has adjourned the hearing for another two weeks on a PIL seeking tabling of Justice Raghubir Das Commission of Enquiry report on the missing keys of Puri Jagannath Temple ‘Ratna Bhandar’ in the state Assembly. A Division Bench headed by Chief Justice Chakradhari Sharan Singh on Friday adjourned the hearing as the state government sought two weeks more time to file an affidavit in response to the PIL, which was filed by a Puri-based resident in the year 2023.

Dilip Kumar Baral had approached the High Court seeking the court’s intervention as the state government had “failed” in making the enquiry commission report public.

The Justice Raghubir Das Commission of Enquiry was set by the state government on June 6, 2018, to inquire into the circumstances in which the keys of Lord Jagannath’s treasury called ‘Ratna Bhandar’ at Puri temple went missing.

Justice Das submitted his report to the Odisha government on November 29, 2018, but the state government has not tabled the report on the floor of the state Assembly.

The state government reportedly spent around Rs 23 lakh for the Commission of Enquiry, Baral mentioned in his petition stating that the people of the state are kept in the dark about the findings of the Commission of Enquiry report.

In its preliminary hearing, the High Court in April last year had asked the state government to file its counter in an affidavit within two months about the current status of the enquiry report.

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