Sitharaman offers prayers to presiding deities of Sri Jagannath temple

Puri, Aug 17 (UNI) Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Thursday offered prayers to the presiding deities of the 12th century Sri Jagannath temple.

Sitharaman, accompanied by Union Education Minister Dharmendra Pradhan, BJP national spokesman Sambit Patra, and local BJP MLAs Jayanta Sgharanghi and Lalitendu Bidydhar Mohapatra, went around the shrine and spent nearly 30 minutes inside the temple.

The Union Finance Minister arrived on Wednesday night on a two-day visit to Odisha to attend several programmes in Puri and Bhubaneswar.

She visited the sand art on “Meri Maati Mera Desh,” erected by noted sand artist Sudarshan Pattnaik at the Blue Flag beach here, and attended a plantation programme under the Meri Maati Mera Desh initiative in Puri.

The Finance Minister took the Panch Pran pledge at a function here as espoused by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and pledged to make India developed and self-reliant by 2047, to remove any trace of colonial mindset, to celebrate the heritage, and to strengthen unity in respect of those who protect the country.

The Union Finance Minister also honoured the family members of martyrs and freedom fighters.

The Union Minister collected the “maati” at Biraharekrushnapur, the birthplace of noted freedom fighter Jayee Rajguru, under the “Meri Maati Mera Desh” campaign in the presence of Union Education Minister Dharmendra Pradhan.

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