MP: MTMC Admin, Security Agency & Priests To Face Music Over Blaze In Ujjain's Mahakal Temple

MP: MTMC Admin, Security Agency & Priests To Face Music Over Blaze In Ujjain's Mahakal Temple

Magisterial inquiry panel submits interim report

FP News ServiceUpdated: Thursday, March 28, 2024, 11:46 PM IST
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Ujjain (Madhya Pradesh): The three-member magisterial probe panel has blamed Mahakaleshwar Temple Management Committee (MTMC)’s administration, private security agency Krystal Integrated Services Ltd and unauthorised persons for the fire incident in garbh-griha (sanctum-sanctorum) of the Mahakaleshwar Temple during bhasmaarti on Dulhendi on March 25.

Fourteen people had sustained burn injuries in the incident. A few heads are likely to roll in MTMC. Besides, private security agency personnel and a few panda purohits too are likely to face music.

The panel, comprising Zila Panchayat CEO Mrinal Meena (IAS) and ADM Anukool Jain, submitted interim report to collector-cum-chairman of MTMC on Thursday evening.

The report cited use of inflammable gulal in sanctum-sanctorum during bhasmaarti and the only exit door remaining closed for 15 minutes during the incident for the fire and large number of injured. It has also blamed presence of large number of priests and servants, temple administration’s failure to discharge their duty and violation of protocol for Holi.

Mumbai’s fire expert Nilesh Ukande cited excessive use of inflammable gulal as main cause of the fire accident. However, sample reports were still awaited.

Collector Neeraj Kumar Singh said that negligence was detected at various levels. He said that action would be taken against temple administration officers and employees for failure to implement MTMC orders. A notice was also being issued to security agency, he said and added that action would be taken against other persons responsible.

To develop a full-proof security arrangement for Mahakal temple, four teams of three members each would visit major temples like Kashi Vishwanath, Tirupati, Shirdi Sai Baba and Somnath. They would study security arrangements of these temples during festivals and suggest similar arrangements for Mahakal. Standard operating procedure would also be prepared for systematic operation of the temple during major festivals. Besides, administrative responsibilities would also be divided.

ACTION TO BE TAKEN at THREE LEVELS

According to sources, action against the guilty would be taken at the level of collector, MTC and the state government.

State government is likely to take action on senior administrative officials. Likewise, employees of the private security company may also be axed. The panda and purohits who use to give access to unauthorised persons may also face music. “Primarily stringent action will be taken at the administrative level and police action will be initiated after completion of full inquiry into the case,” sources said.

RECOMMENDATIONS MADE BY THE INQUIRY COMMITTEE

Modern fire alarm system, smoke detector and fire fighting system in temple

Comprehensive security arrangements by making available necessary security equipment and human resources

Developing systematic pass system

Apart from bhasmaarti, moving bhasmaarti darshan to be strengthened

Complete ban on carrying harmful materials inside the temple including mobile phones

Emergency route in the temple

Suggestions have been given to celebrate symbolic Holi in the temple on Rang Panchami.

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