The Assam government has issued guidelines for the celebration of the forthcoming Durga puja in view of the Covid-19 situation.

Assam health minister Himanta Biswa Sarma on Tuesday told reporters in Guwahati that the government has not imposed any ban in the celebration of the puja but the organisers have to follow the laid down protocols.

Sarma said that the puja committees will have to take permission from the respective deputy commissioner for the celebration of the puja.

“The puja committees will have to organise the puja in open pandals and no cultural events, competitions will be allowed during the puja,” the minister said.

He said that the members of the puja committee and the priests will have to mandatorily undergo the COVID-19 test on Panchami.

The committee members will also have to undergo the second test after idol immersion, Sarma said.

“Not more than 50 persons will be allowed in the puja pandals at any given time. The committee will have to ensure that the pilgrims should enter the pandal with proper hand sanitization,” he said.

The minister said except woman, no pillion riders will be allowed during Durga Puja.

The puja committees will have to ensure that there should be two gates in the pandals- entry & exit

The immersion procession has been completely restricted.

He further said organisers should not allow any person to enter the Puja premises without face cover and washing of hands.

It will be the responsibility of Puja organisers to arrange for hand washing/sanitization at the entrance of Puja premises.

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