Tuesday, 18 January, 2022
HomeIndiaPlaces of worship in Maharashtra to reopen from next week, says Uddhav...

Places of worship in Maharashtra to reopen from next week, says Uddhav Thackeray

Wishing people on the occasion of Diwali, the Maharashtra chief minister said that strict Covid protocols will have to be followed by devotees.

Text Size:

Mumbai: Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Saturday said the places of religious worship across the state, which were shut since the COVID-19 lockdown in March, will reopen from Monday.

Thackeray said this in a statement.

Extending greetings to people on the occasion of Diwali, he said, “We can’t forget that the demon coronavirus is still amongst us. Even though this demon is slowly falling silent now, we cannot be complacent. Citizens need to follow discipline.”

“Just like discipline and restraint were observed while celebrating Holi, Ganesh Chaturthi,Navratri and Pandharpur wari (annual pilgrimage), followers of other faiths also celebrated festivals like Eid, Mount Mary festival by keeping the COVID-19 safety protocol in mind,” he said.

The chief minister said that although places of religious worship had to be shut during the pandemic, god was taking care of all devotees in the form of doctors, nurses and other health staff.

He said that after the religious places of worship are reopened from Diwali Padwa that falls on Monday, rules and safety protocol have to be followed strictly.

“Crowding will have to avoided. The reopening of religious places is not a government order, but the wish of the Almighty. Shoes will have to kept outside the premises and wearing masks is mandatory,” he said.

“If we follow discipline, we will get God’s blessings,” Thackeray said.

The chief minister was repeatedly being targeted by the opposition BJP for keeping the places of worship shut even as the Unlock process began in June.

However, Thackeray had defended his decision saying it was difficult to follow physical distancing at the places of worship.

During his last webcast address to citizens, he had said that standard operating procedures (SOPs) were being prepared and the decision on reopening of these places will be taken after Diwali.

The issue had also led to a standoff between Thackeray and Governor B S Koshyari, who reminded the Shiv Sena president of his Hindutva credentials and asked if he had turned secular.

The governor’s letter to the chief minister was criticised by the MVA allies.


Also read: Maharashtra govt to release Rs 2,300 crore compensation for farmers hit by crop damage


 

Subscribe to our channels on YouTube & Telegram

Why news media is in crisis & How you can fix it

India needs free, fair, non-hyphenated and questioning journalism even more as it faces multiple crises.

But the news media is in a crisis of its own. There have been brutal layoffs and pay-cuts. The best of journalism is shrinking, yielding to crude prime-time spectacle.

ThePrint has the finest young reporters, columnists and editors working for it. Sustaining journalism of this quality needs smart and thinking people like you to pay for it. Whether you live in India or overseas, you can do it here.

Support Our Journalism

Most Popular

×