The Nagaland state government on Friday permitted the celebration of Durga Puja in regions outside the containment zones and issued a series of guidelines to prevent the transmission of the virus in the pandals.
Principal Secretary (Home) of Nagaland Abhijit Sinha issued the guidelines and said that people can visit pandals only between 5 am and 9 pm.
Sinha noted that the festival is celebrated across the state and the largest number being in Dimapur district.
Principal Secretary Sinha has asked organisers to ensure that all visitors should follow all Covid-19 protocols.
Sinha said that a maximum of 50 percent of the capacity will be allowed inside the puja pandals at a time.
The order stated that puja organisers must ensure thermal screening, hand-washing or sanitising facilities on the premises, strict adherence to social distancing in queues outside pandals, and sanitisation of the pandals every six hours.
It further stated that the organisers must shift a person showing COVID-like symptoms to the nearest hospital.
The Nagaland government has requested senior citizens and children below the age of 10 and also people with comorbidities as well as l pregnant women to avoid visiting the puja pandals.
The order aslk set a limit of 50 people that can be part of any immersion procession.
The district task force that was headed by the deputy commissioner will be the final authority to clear the puja pandals, and will conduct immersion in a staggered manner to prevent the spread of the contagious virus.