The Shree Jagannath Temple Administration (SJTA) has received seven bids from different media houses for live telecast of Lord Jagannath's Rath Jatra festival in Puri, an official said Monday.
"We have received seven bids from different Odia and Hindi television channels for live telecast of Lord Jagannth's car festival beginning from 'Snan Purnima' (bathing rituals) on June 17 till 'Niladri Bije' (return to temple after festival) on July 14," the SJTA official said.
The SJTA opened the tender on Monday afternoon. The final decision on whether to give telecast rights to one television channel or open it for all like previous years, will be taken later, the official said.
The temple administration has decided that from this year it would accord the rights for live telecast of Rath Jatra and other major festivals of Lord Jagannath to the highest-bidding TV channel.
"Though television channels earn good amount of revenue from the companies through commercial advertisements during the Rath Jatra live telecast, they contribute nothing to the temple. Therefore, the administration decided to float a tender to know how much will be their contribution to the temple," said SJTA chief administrator P K Mohapatra. Mohapatra said though the SJTA had tried to sell the live telecast rights in 2011, it could not be successful due to protests.
A section of servitors, however, opposed the bid for live telecast of Rath Jatra.
Ramakrushna Das Mohapatra, spokesperson for the Daitapati Niyog, an association of servitors, said that all should be allowed to telecast the festival as it is a religious matter and not a sports event.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)