India restricts religious festivals over COVID third wave fears | Coronavirus pandemic News

India restricts religious festivals over COVID third wave fears | Coronavirus pandemic News

Authorities prohibit main festivals that begin this week and appeal to large crowds, warning {that a} new wave has already begun in Mumbai.

Indian authorities are limiting main religious festivals that begin this week and appeal to large crowds, warning {that a} new COVID-19 wave had already begun within the monetary capital, Mumbai.

State governments throughout the nation of 1.3 billion folks, which noticed a devastating coronavirus surge in April-May, are clamping down on mass gatherings.

“The third wave is not coming, it is already here,” Mumbai’s Mayor Kishori Pednekar advised reporters on Tuesday.

People crowd a market forward of the Ganesh Chaturti competition in Mumbai [Rafiq Maqbool/AP]

“We can celebrate festivals later. Let us first prioritise the lives and health of our citizens,” added Uddhav Thackeray, the chief minister of the western state of Maharashtra, of which Mumbai is the capital.

He was talking forward of the 11-day Hindu Ganesh Chaturthi competition, which begins on Friday.

The final COVID-19 wave overwhelmed India’s hospitals and was recognized to have killed greater than 200,000 folks.

It struck after one of many world’s greatest religious gatherings, the Kumbh Mela, which attracted some 25 million Hindu pilgrims.

That gathering, giant state election rallies and the infectious Delta virus variant – first detected in India – had been blamed by specialists for fuelling the surge.

Authorities stated a current spike in circumstances within the southern state of Kerala after the Onam competition in August needs to be trigger for alarm.

Indian Catholics attend mass through the annual feast of the start of Virgin Mary on the Shrine of Our Lady of Health in Hyderabad, India [Mahesh Kumar A/AP]

But festive crowds have nonetheless packed markets in Maharashtra and different states in current days, ignoring the warnings.

The state authorities will restrict the peak of effigies of the elephant-headed god Ganesha to cut back the variety of devotees carrying them through the competition.

Processions on the competition’s first and final days will probably be banned.

Restrictions on actions and actions are anticipated to be launched this week as circumstances rise in one other main Maharashtra metropolis, Nagpur.

A employee covers a Ganesha idol on the market for the upcoming Ganesh Chaturthi competition, in Jammu, Indian-administered Kashmir [Channi Anand/AP]

In the neighbouring state of Karnataka, an evening curfew will stay in place and districts posting larger optimistic check ranges will probably be banned from holding Ganesh celebrations.

Karnataka well being minister, Ok Sudhakar, advised AFP information company that officers had been additionally involved the current resumption of highschool courses may improve circumstances.

Viti Kumar, a resident of Lucknow within the northern state of Uttar Pradesh, stated she feared folks would let down their guards through the festivals.

“I cannot take chances with my daughter. I am not sending her to school,” she advised AFP.

The southern state of Tamil Nadu has banned public competition celebrations, whereas the jap state of West Bengal was anticipated to impose curbs on the nine-day Durga Puja in October.

India has the world’s second-highest recognized caseload, with greater than 33 million infections, and 441,000 deaths.

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