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Pashupatinath temple re-opens

world Updated: Sep 06, 2009 14:41 IST
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Nepal's famous Pashupatinath temple, which was closed for general public after two newly- appointed Indian priests were severely thrashed by Maoists two days ago, re-opened on Sunday for devotees amid tight security.

The 5th century Hindu shrine opened its doors for the public at 4.00 am as hundreds of worshippers queued up to offer prayers at the temple.

The Indian priests, Girish Bhatta and Raghavendra Bhatta, both 32 and hailing from Karnataka, were assaulted, their clothes torn and their sacred thread cut by a group of 40-50 Maoists, who stormed the temple on Friday protesting their recent appointment. The incident forced the temple authorities to temporarily close the shrine for the public.

"The temple has been opened and people are allowed to worship at the shrine," said Shushil Nahata, Member Secretary of the Pashupati Area Development Trust (PADT) that looks after the temple affairs.

However, security guards checked each and every devotee to prevent any Maoist infiltration into the temple again, he said.

"The situation is calm now and there are no demonstrations," he told.