SAMBALPUR SATURDAY JUNE 9, 2018 `6.00 PAGES 16 CITY EDITION TRUMP PLANS TO PARDON BOXING ICON MUHAMMAD ALI The late boxing legend was convicted in 1967 for refusing to report for military duty after being drafted to fight in the Vietnam War WHAT IS A PRESIDENTIAL PARDON? IS TRUMP ON A PARDON SPREE? The US President has vast powers to commute those languishing in jail and pardon those facing prison terms even before charges are filed. A pardon wipes the slate clean for the recipient, even halting judicial proceedings that are underway. Trump has so far pardoned six people. ■ ■ According to the US media, Trump is likely to pardon a dozen or more people in the coming weeks In a controversial tweet earlier this week, Trump said he has the power to pardon himself. The White House later clarified the occasion wouldn’t arise as Trump hasn’t done anything wrong 3,000 THE NUMBER OF CLEMENCY PETITIONS TRUMP IS REPORTEDLY CONSIDERING CHENNAI ■ MADURAI ■ VIJAYAWADA ■ BENGALURU ■ KOCHI ■ HYDERABAD ■ VISAKHAPATNAM ■ COIMBATORE ■ KOZHIKODE ■ THIRUVANANTHAPURAM ■ BELAGAVI ■ BHUBANESWAR ■ SHIVAMOGGA ■ MANGALURU ■ TIRUPATI ■ TIRUCHY ■ TIRUNELVELI ■ SAMBALPUR ■ HUBBALLI ■ DHARMAPURI ■ KOTTAYAM ■ KANNUR ■ VILLUPURAM ■ KOLLAM ■ WARANGAL ■ TADEPALLIGUDEM ■ NAGAPATTINAM ■ THRISSUR ■ KALABURAGI SC comes down hard on devotees’ exploitation at Jagannath temple Odisha inks MoU with Gopichand for world class badminton academy Apex court directs Odisha Govt to study management schemes of other important shrines E X P R E S S N E W S S E R V I C E @ New Delhi EVEN as the Odisha Government finds itself embroiled in controversy over loss of keys to the Sri Ja g annath Temple’s “Ratna Bhandar”, the Supreme Court on Friday took serious note of alleged exploitation of devotees by ‘sevaks’ at the 12th century shrine in Puri and issued a slew of directions to prevent any such malpractice and mismanagement. A vacation bench of justices Adarsh Kumar Goel and Ashok Bhushan, which passed several directions, said proper management of pilgrimage centres in a country of great importance is a matter of public interest. It said that the authorities should ensure that all devotees have hassle-free visits and the offerings made by them are not misused. “These centres are of undoubted religious, social, historical and architectural importance, representing cultural heritage of our country...Millions of people visit these centres not only for tourism, but also for seeking inspiration for righteous values and their well being, and make huge offerings and donations for advancement of such values,” the bench said, while seek- ‘Sevaks should be compensated’ The ‘sevaks’ of the temple ought to be duly compensated by the legitimate remuneration as may be determined by the authority concerned The court ordered the temple administrator to ensure that no direct collection of offerings is made by any ‘sevak’ and all the offerings are made either in the ‘hundi’ or are deposited and accounted for and properly utilised The court made it clear that the ‘sevaks’ of the temple ought to be duly compensated by the legitimate remuneration. ing response on the issue from both the Centre and the State Government. The directions have come at a time when there is just one month left for the commencement of the annual Rath Yatra. In order to ensure proper management of the famous temple, the apex court directed the Odisha Government to study the management schemes of other important shrines such as Vaishno Devi in Jammu and Kashmir, Somnath temple in Gujarat, Golden Temple in Punjab, Tirupati temple in Andhra Pradesh and Dharamsthala temple in Karnataka. It ordered the Odisha Government to immediately constitute a committee in this regard and said that the committee submit its interim report by June 30. The court order came on a petition filed by lawyer Mrinalini Padhi who highlighted difficulties faced by devotees at the Jagannath temple in Puri and their harassment or exploitation by the ‘sevaks’ of the The bench appointed senior advocate Gopal Subramanium as amicus curiae to assist the court in the matter temple. The petition also alleged that the environment of the temple was not hygienic as it ought to be, and also said there are encroachments on its premises. The court directed that these two issues should also be looked into by the authorities. While the court said that there should be no exploitation of devotees, it made it clear that the ‘sevaks’ of the temple ought to be duly compensated by the legitimate remuneration as may be det e r m i n e d by t h e a u t h o r i t y concerned. To ensure transparency, the court ordered the temple administrator to ensure that no direct collection of offerings is made by any ‘sevak’ and all the offerings are made either in the ‘hundi’ or are deposited and accounted for and properly utilised. “To ensure this, the help of CCTV cameras and its footage or other steps may be explored,” the bench said. Insisting on the “importance” of the matter, the court also directed the district judge of Puri to file an interim report by June 30 on the factual aspects such as difficulties faced by the devotees, exploitative practices and deficiencies in the MORE: P6 management, if any . Sports Secretary Vishal Dev and chief national coach of Indian badminton team Pullela Gopichand signing MoU in presence of Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik for establishment of a world class badminton academy, in Bhubaneswar on Friday | IRFANA E X P R E S S N E W S S E R V I C E @ Bhubaneswar THE Odisha Government has roped in Pullela Gopichand Badminton Foundation for development of badminton in the State. On Friday, the State signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Foundation to set up a world class badminton academy . The Pullela Gopichand Badminton Foundation will provide technical support and overall development of badminton in Odisha. Gopichand, the badminton legend and chief national coach of the Indian badminton team, and Secretary in the Sports department Vishal Dev signed the MoU in the presence of Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik at the secre- tariat here. Speaking on the occasion, Naveen said the State aspires to win Olympic medals in sports and there is none better than Gopichand to help Odisha realise this dream. Gopichand has trained several national and international badminton players who have brought laurels to the country, he said and added that the world class badminton training facility will help groom world class champions from the State. The State Government will provide all possible support to Gopichand and his foundation, Naveen added. Recalling the success of Asian Athletics Championships (AAC), the Chief Minister said it was organised in a period of 90 days where 42 countries and more than 1,000 sportspersons participated. The event demonstrated the leadership ability of the State and emergence of Bhubanswar as the sports capital of the country, he added. Stating that he is immensely pleased to see the kind of support the State Government is providing to sports, Gopichand said the success of AAC, sponsorship of the Indian Hockey team and establishment of high performance training centres clearly underlines that Odisha is a great State and a has a visionary Government. The Government is making all efforts to bring Odisha in the global sporting map, he added. The Chief Minister also released the Asian Athletics Championship Coffee Table book titled, ‘Challenge to Opportunity’ on the occasion. Minister of State for Sports and Youth Affairs Chandra Sarathi Behera, Minister for I&PR Pratap Jena, Minister for Tourism and Culture Ashok Panda, Development Commissioner R Balakrishnan and senior officials were present.
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