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Friday, October 22, 2021

Bengaluru civic body eases certain Covid-19 curbs for Durga Puja

The revised guidelines also allow the use of musical instruments like drums during the rituals.

By: Express News Service | Bengaluru |
October 8, 2021 11:55:51 am
The civic body has continued with the ban on distribution of sweets, fruits and flowers. The immersion should be at a public tank or immersion pond identified and permitted by the zonal joint commissioner and the police. (Representational)

Durga Puja in Bengaluru this year will be a grander affair when compared to last year as a few curbs relating to the Covid-19 pandemic have been eased.

In an order put out by Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike chief Gaurav Gupta, the restriction on putting up Durga Idols of only 4 feet and not above it has been removed. During the Pushpanjali and Sandhi puja timings, one has to follow all Covid-19 protocols and people will be allowed only in batches of 50. However, there is no restriction on the total number of batches.

Earlier, the BBMP had allowed only one Durga Puja per ward. However, now, Gupta has stated that if required, there can be more than one idols in a ward but the organisers have to seek permission from the Joint Commissioner of BBMP and the police.

The revised guidelines also allow the use of musical instruments like drums during the rituals.

However, the civic body has continued with the ban on distribution of sweets, fruits and flowers. The immersion should be at a public tank or immersion pond identified and permitted by the zonal joint commissioner and the police.

The visitors will be subjected to thermal screening at the entry gate and the association has to place additional sanitiser bottles at multiple places inside the venue. “Sanitization of chairs, tables, floors are to be done at least four times a day. Display of safety norms for Covid-19 inside the venue / premises is mandatory. Installation of potable drinking water for all visitors,” the guidelines read.

Bengaluru South MP Tejasvi Surya, however, called the guidelines discriminatory, arbitrary and illogical. “The local administration has no locus standi to direct what pooja and how much of it is to be done. The restriction on dhol/drums takes away the very fervour of joy and celebration. None of these rules have any established connection with the spread of the virus. Additionally, when there is an overall restriction on the numbers of persons allowed for different rituals, restricting activities like dhol/drums is devoid of merit as well,” Surya said.

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