Odisha Government Imposes Strict Restrictions For Maha Shivratri

Bhubaneswar: The festival of Maha Shivratri is one of the largest and most significant among the sacred festivals of India and is approaching. People usually congregate to worship Shiva and observe it by fasting and meditation and keep awake all night.

Since the State is passing through a critical situation due to detection of new variant of SARS-CoV 2 and it is necessary to strictly adhere to COVID-19 safety protocols for containment of spread of the infection.

Keeping in view the above situation the State Government has specifically directed that large gatherings, congregations shall continue to be prohibited.

The order further specified that, social, political, sports, entertainment, academic, cultural and religious functions and other gatherings shall be allowed with a ceiling of 500 persons subject to strict adherence of the COVID-19 safety protocols.

The Special Relief Commissioner (SRC) has also directed that while allowing celebration of Maha Shivaratri on March 11 and its related rituals the Collectors, Municipal Commissioners may restrict congregations, gatherings to such number as may be felt appropriate in view of the prevailing pandemic situation considering local situations, circulation space available within such temples and its premises to enter into or gather in temples strictly adhering to the COVID-19 safety protocols.

Further melas, congregations outside or within the temple premises may also be reasonably restricted so as to avoid mass gathering,  crowding.

Any persons found violating the order shall be punished under the provisions of the Disaster Management Act, 2005 and other relevant laws.

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