No Durga Puja pandals this year in Delhi's Chittaranjan Park
- Chittaranjan Park Kali Mandir Society has decided against letting devotees enter temple premises this year
- The committee has collaborated with Direct to Home service to provide online darshan
- The club will also deliver prasad at their doorsteps
AAP MLA on Monday said that no Durga Puja pandals will be allowed to set up in Delhi's Chittaranjan Park in the wake of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. However, he added, that the puja in the main temple will be held with the entry of around 50 people.
The Chittaranjan Park committee along with the committees of Greater Kailash 1 and 2, Alakananda and Kalkaji have decided to suspend all Durga Puja celebrations in the area, on the advice of Greater Kailash MLA Saurabh Bharadwaj on Monday, as per a PTI report.
Bhardwaj, the Greater Kailash legislator, said the decision was taken in view of a huge number of senior citizen population in the area.
"Most of the population of CR Park and members of puja committees are senior citizens and it is important that they remain indoors and avoid contact with unknown people in pandals," the MLA said.
Online darshans, home delivery of prasad and COVID-19 tests for priests are some of the unique measures that Durga Puja organisers have come up with to mitigate the spread of the novel virus and conduct the Puja in the shadow of the coronavirus pandemic.
The committee has collaborated with a Direct to Home service provider and a local operator so that devotees can have a darshan of Durga idols from their houses. The temple society also has plans to facilitate online darshan through its Facebook page and YouTube channel.
The Society Joint Seretary Prodip Ganguly stated, "Around 2.5 lakh people attend our Durga Puja. Due to COVID-19, we have decided to organise the festival in a simple manner this year. Only a few members of our management committee will be in attendance."
He added, that the committee, "We have hired certified cook to prepare prasad and he has to show negative COVID-19 report. As devotees will not be allowed, we will deliver prasad at their doorsteps within a 2-km radius for which an agency has been engaged."
Ganguly further stated that the committee has arranged for live telecast of its aarti so that devotees can offer Pushpanjali from the secure confines of their homes. The committee added all rituals will be live streamed and said that their Durga Pratima which is usually 12 to 14 ft every year, is just 5ft this time around.
The Purbanchal Bangiyo Samiti, an umbrella body of 38 Durga Puja Committees located in East Delhi stated, that it would allow only 10 members will be allowed to have dashan of the durga idol at a time. Similarly the names of the visitors will be registered to facilitate contact tracing.
Samiti General Secretary Mrinal K Biswas said, "In view of the pandemic, Durga idol will be worshipped in 13 temples while 12 committees will organise only 'Kalash' puja."
He added, "We have also decided to hire two priests due to COVID-19. If the main priest gets infected, the other can perform the puja."
The Durga Puja Charitable Committee which claims to be organising the Puja for 111 years said it will be conduct COVID-19 tests on the six labourers engaged in building pandals.
The Committee's General Secretary Robin Bose added that devotees will be limited and will be encouraged to download the Aarogya Setu application on their phones.
The Mata Mandir Sarbojanin Durga Samity has decided against allowing outsiders to the puja.