Nashik: The organisers of an annual 'Urs' procession from a mausoleum on Tuesday denied allegations that they had made any attempts to barge inside the Trimbakeshwar Temple in Maharashtra's Nashik on Saturday, which triggered violence between two groups.
Organiser and cleric Matin Syed said as per the decades-old traditions, the devotees participating in 'Urs' procession had gone near the steps of the northern entrance of Trimbakeshwar Temple to offer incense.
Why this objection now asks Syed
"We have been doing this for years. We never attempted to enter the sanctum sanctorum of the temple and there has never been any objection to our incense offering. Why now?" he asked.
Earlier on Tuesday, Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, who holds the Home portfolio, ordered lodging a FIR and a high-level SIT probe into the riots that rocked this famed temple town over the weekend.
Nashik Superintendent of Police Shahaji Umap said that after the purported dispute, a conciliation meeting was held between the two groups and matter had been sorted out amicably.
He said that the dispute arose owing to certain misunderstandings, which were duly clarified after the meeting, though the 'Urs' organisers also made their stand clear.
People allegedly tried to offer a 'chadar' at temple premises
There are also reports on social media that some persons allegedly tried to offer a 'chadar' at the temple premises, though there has been no official word on these.
The Shree Trimbakeshwar Devasthan Trust, Nashik has filed a police complaint and the temple's 'Mahant' Aniket Shastri thanked the government for ordering a probe into the "trespass" attempts.
SIT to probe the matter
Fadnavis said that the SIT will probe not only the latest incident, but also a similar one last year in which some mob had allegedly barged inside the Trimbakeshwar Temple through the main gate.
The local police have said that the rumours of the alleged unauthorised entry into the temple were baseless and the incident happened owing to some misunderstandings.
Early on Saturday, tension gripped this pilgrimage town when a mob of people gathered outside the Trimbakeshwar Temple and then allegedly attempted to forcibly enter the premises.
This resulted in huge tension culminating in violent clashes even as the temple authorities summoned the police to control the situation and Chief Minister Eknath Shinde directed suitable action in the matter.
As the town returned to an uneasy calm, at least three dozen miscreants from both sides have been detained, while the local police organised reconciliation meetings between the two groups to hammer out a solution.
Opposition Shiv Sena-UBT leaders have slammed the government for a failure of the law and order as the state witnessed two incidents of violence during the weekend at Akola with one dead, and then in Nashik.
Rejecting the charges, Fadnavis countered by saying that some persons or forces were attempting to foment trouble in the state but they would be foiled and exposed soon.
The Lord Shiva Temple in Trimbak is one of the 12 Jyotirlingas in the country and the holy Godavari River originates from the Western Ghats here.
The temple is located between three hills - Brahmagiri, Nilgiri and Kalagiri - and the extraordinary feature of the Jyotirlinga is that the linga in the form of a 3-faced form embodying the 'Tridev' - Lords Brahma, Vishnu, and Shiva.
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