Sri Jagannath Temple Act of 1954.
- Odisha state cabinet has approved amendments to the Sri Jagannath Temple Act of 1954, simplifying issues pertaining to land owned by the Jagannath Temple.
- Now, temple administration and concerned officials have the power to sell or lease out temple land, without any approval from the state government.
- In 1806, the British government had issued regulations for the management of the Jagannath temple
- After Independence, Jagannath Temple Act was introduced in the year 1952, which came into effect in 1954.
- The Act contains provisions on land rights of the temple, duties of the sevayat (priests), administrative powers of the Shri Jagannath Temple Managing Committee, rights and privileges of the Raja of Puri and other persons connected with the management and administration of the temple.
- Earlier, people who had occupied or were in possession of the temple land for a long period of time had to approach the state government for the sale or transfer of the land.
- The power will now be delegated to temple administration and concerned officials for the sale and lease of land in the name of Jagannath temple.
- Unlike earlier, no approval will be required from the state government for the process.
- The temple was constructed in the 12th century by King Anatavarman Chodaganga Deva of the Eastern Ganga Dynasty.
- Jagannath Puri temple is called ‘Yamanika Tirtha’
- According to the Hindu beliefs, the power of ‘Yama’, the god of death has been nullified in Puri due to the presence of Lord Jagannath.
- This temple is also called the “White Pagoda” and is a part of Char Dham pilgrimages (Badrinath, Dwaraka, Puri, Rameswaram).
- There are four gates to the temple- Eastern ‘Singhdwara’ which is the main gate with two crouching lions, Southern ‘Ashwadwara’, Western 'Vyaghra Dwara and Northern ‘Hastidwara’.
- In front of the entrance is the Aruna stambha or sun pillar, which was originally at the Sun Temple in Konark.