Police to take final decision on idol height at Durga Puja pandals: Orissa HC

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The Orissa High Court on Wednesday refused to intervene on the government’s directive regarding the height of idols at Durga Puja pandals, and left for the police to take a call on the matter.

The state government had restricted the height of idols to four feet, following which at least 25 puja committees of Cuttack moved the high court.

The high court asked all the puja committees in Cuttack to inform the police in writing the present status of the construction of the idols and their heights.

The police would then inspect the puja pandals, verify the status and allow the committee to go ahead with the Durga Puja if everything is in order,” the counsel of a puja committee, Ashok Mohapatra, said.

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Idols of more than seven feet in height are usually worshipped at the community puja pandals.

The puja committees moved the high court, following a massive public outcry over the governments decision on the height restrictions in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The puja committees told the court that work for making idols began much before the government order.

Already several gold and silver ornaments for the deities have been made, and altering the height of the idols at this stage would render these useless, they said.

The high court’s direction came after the puja committees and police failed to reach a consensus on the issue on Tuesday.

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