Puri: Police in Puri have registered three cases and arrested 12 people for allegedly running a fake RT-PCR certificate racket that provided people with forged documents to gain entry to the 12th century Shree Jagannath temple. According to the police, two such cases were filed at Singhadwar police station over the past week, but there is another being filed at Kumbharpada police station as well.
Following information that some devotees are presenting fake RT-PCR certificates to gain access to the temple, an inquiry was conducted. Singhadwar Police station has arrested four people—two from Madhya Pradesh and two from Puri town. Police say another accused is absconding.
Similarly, the Kumbharpada police department apprehended three accused persons, including one devotee who submitted a fabricated RT-PCR certificate.
In the third case, the Singhadwar police station arrested five suspects, including a devotee who used a fake RTPCR test report. Four of the other five are gang members, including the mastermind and prime accused. According to them, all four belong to Puri. According to the police, stern action will be taken against the accused persons, and people are urged not to take help from the racket when seeking Lord Jagannath’s darshan.
In order to visit the temple, devotees must show a final COVID-19 vaccination certificate or COVID-19 negative certificate (RT-PCR) of testing done within 96 hours of their visit.