1 February 2023
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The Uttar Pradesh government has issued guidelines for the observance of Chehallum, Shardiya Navratri, Dussehra, and Vijayadashami. The guidelines urge people to maintain communal harmony and law and order during the upcoming events. Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath has also ordered strict compliance with the COVID-19 instructions issued by the state government.

The guidelines state that while permission has been granted for the Ramlila stage and Durga Puja pandals, people should take care that public traffic is not affected due to them, according to Uttar Pradesh’s additional chief secretary (Home) Avnish Kumar Awasthi.

Awasthi also said the rules of the Motor Vehicles Act should be strictly followed, and suspicious vehicles would be checked by setting up barriers and police check posts.

Idols should be installed in traditional but empty space while the size of the idols should be kept as small as possible. The number of people should not exceed the capacity of the ground, as per the rules.

The guidelines also said that in the case of idol immersion, only small vehicles should be used. Moreover, coronavirus guidelines issued by the government should be followed, including social distancing and wearing of face masks.

The state government has also paid special attention to public facilities such as cleanliness, electricity, and drinking water.

The new guidelines come after the state government relaxed restrictions on wedding ceremonies, allowing a maximum of 100 people at marriages and other celebrations. The limit was capped at 50 persons earlier.

While the relaxation has been taken in view of falling coronavirus cases in the state, the government has mandated the social distancing norms be followed at all functions. As per the rules, a COVID-19 help desk should also be set up at the location entrance.

Abdul Gh Lone