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  4. What is the mystery behind the missing key of Jagannath Temple's treasury? Know details

What is the mystery behind the missing key of Jagannath Temple's treasury? Know details

The key of Jagannath Ratna Bhandar has been missing for the last 6 years. The inner gem store was last opened on 14 July 1985. During that time, a list was also made of the jewellery which was kept in the store. After this, this part of the gem store was never opened.

Written By: Kristina Das @https://twitter.com/KristinaDas2 New Delhi Published on: May 29, 2024 14:46 IST
missing key of Jagannath Temple's treasury
Image Source : SOCIAL Know the mystery behind the missing key of Jagannath Temple's treasury.

Jagannath Temple of Odisha is considered one of the four Dhams of Hinduism. It is said that once a devotee sees the deity of Lord Jagannath, he attains salvation. This temple of Odisha was built in the 12th century based on Kalinga architecture. The deities of Jagannath, his brother Balabhadra and his sister Subhadra are present in the temple. If we talk about Jagannath's Ratna Bhandar, then the jewellery of all three gods is kept here. Whatever jewellery the devotees offer to the deities, they are kept in the gem store. Even in ancient times, the jewels offered to the deity by kings and devotees were kept in this gem store. Their value today is said to be in billions and trillions.

What is the secret of losing the key to the gem store?

Jagannath Ratna Bhandar has two parts, inner and outer. The outer gem store is the place where the jewellery often worn by the deities is kept. In the inner store, those ornaments are kept which are not worn by the Lord. The outer part of Ratna Bhandar is open but the inner part has been closed for years. Its key has also been missing for the last 6 years.

The inner gem store was last opened on July 14, 1985. During that time, a list was also made of the jewellery which was kept in the store. After this, this part of the gem store was never opened. Now even its key is not available. 

Political row over the key to the Ratna Bhandar

The key to Jagannath Ratna Bhandar has become a political issue these days. BJP had filed a PIL regarding this in the Odisha High Court last year. In the PIL, the court's intervention was sought to get the Ratna Bhandar opened. A demand for a CBI inquiry into the matter was also made by the BJP. Odisha The Law Minister had tried to distance himself by saying that he did not know whether the key to the Ratna Bhandar had been lost or not. However, this was not the first PIL regarding the opening of the Ratna Bhandar. Even before this, PILs were filed demanding the opening of the repository. In 2018, the Odisha High Court had ordered the opening of the gem repository, so that the treasury could be inspected. But this was not possible due to the key being missing. In February this year, the State Law Minister had said that the treasury of the Ratna Bhandar would be opened during the Jagannath Rath Yatra i.e. on July 7.

Where is Lord Jagannath's gem store built?

The gem store of Jagannath ji about which there is debate is built under the feet of Lord Jagannath. Not only the ornaments of the three gods but also precious utensils are kept here. According to the information, ever since this temple was built, these same ornaments and utensils have been kept in the gem store. The kings of that era gifted huge quantities of jewellery to their worshippers. Maharaja Ranjit Singh and Raja Harminder Sahib of Amritsar had donated a lot of gold to Lord Jagannath. All these treasures are kept in the gem store. It is said that the treasure is kept in two cellars built in the temple. There is a demand to open those cellars.

How is the treasure trove of Lord Jagannath opened?

The key to Jagannathpuri temple of Odisha is the responsibility of the Collector of Puri. To open a store, permission has to be first obtained from the state government. In the year 2018, the High Court had directed to opening of the gem store based on an ASI survey. Following the instructions of the High Court, the Odisha government ordered to opening of the gem store of Jagannath Temple in April 2018. The gem store could not be opened because the key was missing. Since then till today the mystery of the missing keys has not been revealed. Although an investigation was conducted regarding this, the report has not been made public to date.

ALSO READ: 7 lesser-known facts about Jagannath Puri temple you must know

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