Bengal CM Mamata in Odisha, Visits Jagannath Temple, Avoids Questions on ‘New Front’


Reported By: Akshay Mishra

Edited By: Oindrila Mukherjee

Last Updated: March 22, 2023, 23:51 IST

West Bengal CM Mamata Banarjee during a visit to Puri on Wednesday. (Image: PTI)

West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee is set to meet her Odisha counterpart Naveen Patnaik on Thursday, where she is likely to discuss a number of important issues with him

West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee on Wednesday visited the proposed site for the construction of the Bengali Guest House in Puri, and was all praise for the Odisha government for providing the land for the project. But she did not mention the ‘New Front’ even once though her meeting with her counterpart Naveen Patnaik is scheduled for Thursday, where she is likely to discuss a number of important issues with him.

“Puri is my first home and mahaprabhu (Jagannath) is my thakur (god),” Banerjee said, while visiting the famous temple dedicated to Jagannath where she offered special prayers.

Parental servitor Ramakrishna Dasamahapatra offered her khandua patta near Singhdwar and took her inside the temple. The chief minister was inside the temple for an hour. “I offered puja for Maa, Maati, Manush. I got emotional seeing the changing of Patitapaban Bana on Srimandira,” she said.

Banerjee further said Puri was her hometown and she was proud that 90 percent Bengalis came to the state for the yatra. “The relationship between Odia and Bengali is very good,” said the temple’s chief servitor Jagannath Swain Mohapatra.

Earlier, Mamata had visited land identified for the Bengali Guest House near Giral at Sipasarubali Mouza. After visiting the land, Banerjee compared Odisha and West Bengal as two sisters. She said this guest house could be useful for the tourists from West Bengal who visited Puri during the world-famous Ratha Yatra, Snana Yatra and during other festivals and holidays. Construction will start after necessary procedures are completed.

“Lakhs of tourists from West Bengal come here round the year to visit the Jagannath temple and its famous festival. I will meet Naveen ji and have detailed discussions with him,” Banerjee said.

Chief secretary Pradeep Jena said, “She has liked the land identified for the Bengali guest house. We will provide all cooperation for it.”

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