Bhubaneshwar: Tension erupted in the temple town of Puri after a clash between the police and junior priests at the Jagannath temple on Monday.
Three junior priests and 1 policeman got injured in a tussle between the two sides.
This after the police prohibited the priests from allowing large number of devotees to climb the chariots of Lord Jagannath, Bhalabadra and Sumitra.
The incident occurred during the 'Abakash' ritual of Lord Jagannath as a large number of devotees climbed atop 'Nandighosh', the chariot of Lord Jagannath, and jostled for a glimpse of the deity, police sources said.
In a departure from centuries old tradition, the Jagannath temple administration had prepared a ladder made of aluminium to enable the devotees climb up the three majestic chariots and have a glimpse of the deities.
Following the incident, public darshan atop the three chariots came to a standstill and priests stopped the rituals briefly before the 'Pahandi' of deities into Gundicha temple.
However, the rituals were resumed after intervention of the district, temple and police administration, while priests demanded stern action against the guilty policemen.
The annual rath yatra of Lord Jaganath began on Sunday and like every year, a large number of devotees have thronged the city for the festival.
With additional information from PTI