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Chhath Puja 2020: BMC says no to Puja on beaches, riverbanks and ponds

The BMC has also directed all the 24 administrative wards to depute medical teams at puja locations and provide COVID-19 testing facilities near artificial ponds, according to the release.

Chhath Puja 2020: BMC says no to Puja on beaches, riverbanks and ponds
SHARES

After a long time, the coronavirus numbers in Mumbai have come under control and Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) is trying hard to ensure that there is no second wave in the city. Keeping this in mind, the civic body has asked people not to celebrate this festival on a mass scale. There is also a strict no on celebrating Chhath Puja at beaches, river banks and other natural water bodies in the city in view of the COVID-19 pandemic. The devotees have been asked to avoid crowding.

The Mumbai civic body on Tuesday issued guidelines about the Chhath Puja celebration. These are in line with the current times and will help in maintaining social distancing.

The annual festival dedicated to the Sun god will be celebrated on Friday and Saturday by people who originally hail from north India and are residing in the city.

In the past, the festival used to see a large number of people thronging prominent beaches, river banks and other water bodies to make offerings to the Sun god at sunrise and sunset.

In a release, the BMC said it has decided to put restrictions on Chhath Puja celebration as it will be difficult to enforce social distancing if people gather in large numbers at beaches and riverfronts for rituals and prayers.

In addition to that, no permission will be granted for mass scale celebration at natural water bodies, the BMC said, and appealed to citizens to follow COVID-19 protocols like wearing face masks, maintaining social distance and hand sanitisation while taking part in the festival.

The civic body stated that it will issue necessary permissions to organisations concerned at ward level for conducting Chhath Puja-related programmes on those two days.

It has also asked the police department to ensure people do not crowd at natural water bodies. The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) have protested against the restrictions by the BMC alleging that they are discriminatory in nature as, during the pandemic, immersion of Ganpati idols were allowed.

The BMC has also directed all the 24 administrative wards to depute medical teams at puja locations and provide COVID-19 testing facilities near artificial ponds, according to the release.

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