In view of the COVID-19 pandemic, the festival of Durga Puja will be a low key affair in Cachar district. The decision arrived after the district administration convened a meeting with the representatives of different Puja organizing committees on Tuesday (8/9/2020).
Presiding over the meeting, ADC Rajib Roy explained the objective of the meeting and asked for the views and opinions of various Durga Puja organizing committees as to how to celebrate the festival amid the pandemic.
The representatives of different Durga Puja organising committees voiced their opinions on celebrating Durga Puja festivity in a simple way with minimal decoration or illumination of the pandals. They requested the district administration to set a time limit for immersion of idols to avoid any sort of large and undisciplined gathering.
The administration urged the puja committees to avoid distribution of ‘prasad’ and to minimize the size of idols for hassle-free immersion with less involvement of people.
Some of the puja committees made an appeal for restriction on movement of two-wheelers during the festive period.
It was agreed that the rituals and ‘Anjali’ will take place in the pandals in presence of a few persons comprising the organizers and priest with strict adherence to social distancing norms. Some of the puja committees requested for putting a restriction on the use of loudspeakers and segregation of the immersion ghats etc.
The Additional Deputy Commissioner (Health) and the Executive Officer, Silchar Municipal Board cautioned that if the guidelines relating to COVID-19 protocols do not comply during the celebrations, the highly contagious disease may spread rapidly and the situation may worsen and spin out of control.
The Additional Superintendent of Police made a plea to all the puja committees to perform the rituals without much ado in view of the present pandemic situation. He also opined that the idols should be smaller in size so that minimum persons would be required during immersion.
The Executive Engineer, PWD NH Division has suggested that huge gatherings over Sadarghat bridge during Mahalaya should be restricted in view of the pandemic situation.
The Durga Puja will begin from October 22 and hence this is the right time to start the preparation. But in view of the present scenario, much would be changed.
At present India stands at the second position in the world with 4.37million positive cases and 73,890 deaths. The situation in Cachar too is worsening with 4,469 positive cases and 118 deaths. Hence, extensive precautions should be taken by the devotes during the Durga Puja.