The Question of Crowd Control In This Year’s Pandemic Durga Puja – Are You Safe?
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, crowd control has become one of the most noteworthy determinants while planning this year’s Durga Puja. Once you join in a discussion about the Durga Puja pandals, you’ll hear phrases like ‘two-side open’, ‘three-sides open’ or ‘south-facing open’ and you may think like you’re purchasing a flat. But now, this is what Durga Puja will look like in 2020.
While cities like Delhi have cancelled most of their pujas, in Kolkata, it is surprisingly going to happen! Even though you may feel excited from within, did you think whether or not you are safe amidst the puja crowd? Will you be able to maintain social distancing if you go out for pandal hopping eliminating all the concerns of the virus?
Durga Puja Organiser’s Forum – Their safety measures
According to a Durga Puja organiser’s forum, there are several safety measures that are being advised to be taken during the occasion. In fact, an association of more than 350 Durga Puja committees, the Forum for Durgotsab, they will submit their list of recommendations to the Chief Minister of West Bengal, Mamata Banerjee.
There will be thermal screening of the visitors, wearing masks will be considered as mandatory for all, regular sanitisation of the pandal structures and only 25 people will be allowed to enter the marquee or the open pandal at a particular time. They have also asked the clubs to build open marquees from the front so that the visitors can visit the idol without the need of entering.
Mamata Banerjee, the chief minister of West Bengal said that people need to be extra watchful about their health so that they can enjoy during Durga puja. She is also hopeful and positive about the fact that celebrating the biggest festival of Hindus will be successful with all sorts of safety measures on point. In fact, Durga Puja organisers all over Kolkata are also hoping to let people celebrate this festival by following all the safety measures.
Samajsebi Sangha, located in south Kolkata, has always been popular for their innovative themes every year. They too have decided of altering their pandal’s direction towards the Southern Avenue to make sure people can view the idol from a safe distance without the requirement of parking their vehicles.
To guard the 10-foot high deity, there will be a canopy but the three sides of the marquee will remain open in order to maintain the safety of people. There will be medical professionals stationed near the pandal who will have emergency equipments ready with them. There will also be volunteers who won’t allow crowd or a mob to enter the pandal.
Pandals will have sanitizer tunnels and all sorts of measures will be taken in place to make sure the people are at a safe distance from each other. The road that leads people to the pandals will be sans barricades.
So, as we see, in 2020, Durga Puja will be scaled down while trying to maintain the artistic hallmark of this biggest festival of Hindus. Even if you go out not considering the pandemic, make sure you wear your masks, carry a hand sanitizer, don’t touch any of the structures outside and wash your hands and bath if possible after returning home.