Siliguri, 16th October: With Durga Puja only a few days away, the health department is highly concerned as mass gatherings during the puja days will lead to a rapid increase in the spread of COVID-19.
In view of this, several instructions have been issued to the puja committees to restrict crowds in the pandals. All have been urged to spend the festive days in their neighbourhood and avoid pandal hopping as much as possible.
In this regard, North Bengal COVID-19 OSD Dr Susanta Roy, on Friday, held a meeting along with the district administration in the presence of the Darjeeling district health officials.
Multiple issues, including awareness campaigns and safety measures, were discussed during the meeting. Later in a press conference, Susanta Roy urged all to avoid pandal hopping to some extent and spend the puja days in their respective localities. Everyone must wear masks and police officials will be deployed to ensure no crowds are present during idol immersion.
He further said that COVID-19 awareness camps will be launched in every puja pandal. In the past one week after Vishwakarma Puja, the number of coronavirus infections is on the rise. In view of this, the health officials fear that the number may rise more if the health rules are not followed during Durga Puja.
Rapid Antigen Testing may be done in different markets starting Saturday. Anyone testing positive will be sent to the safe house immediately.