Braving intermittent rain, hordes of individuals have been seen flocking big-ticket Durga puja pandals within the metropolis on Monday morning with little or no regard for social distancing norms.
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee had final week introduced that revellers can go pandal hopping from “Tritiya” – three days earlier than the rituals start — to keep away from crowding on the final 4 days of the annual extravaganza.
At a few of the standard marquees within the metropolis, akin to Ekdalia Evergreen, Singhi Park, Sribhumi Sporting and Badamtala Asar Sangha, individuals weren’t allowed to step inside with out masks.
Crowd administration, nonetheless, remained a problem as swarms of revellers gathered exterior the pandals, regardless of repeated warnings by the puja committees.
At Sribhumi Sporting, within the northern a part of the town, many have been seen huddling at totally different corners to click on pictures of the deity, bedecked in gold jewelry.
Subham Das, a pandal-hopper from Dumdum, stated exterior the Sribhumi pandal, “This pujo is a must-see for me, COVID or no COVID. What’s the level if I am unable to keep again just a little after coming all method from my place, which is a few 8km away?”
Partha Ghosh, an office-bearer of Shivmandir Durga Puja in south Kolkata, stated volunteers on the exit and the entry factors are guaranteeing that folks don’t take off masks or push and shove each other.
Hundreds of individuals additionally thronged the town’s buying hubs for last-minute purchases.
Rita Debnath, when requested why she wasn’t overlaying her nostril, hit again saying she was discovering it tough to breathe with the masks on.
“Why simply me, there are such a lot of others who are usually not following protocols. That is the one time of the 12 months I store for my kids and grandchildren…I am unable to break that custom, the girl, in her mid-60s, stated exterior a store in Gariahat.
The COVID-19 dying rely in West Bengal went previous the 6,000-mark on Sunday with 64 extra fatalities, at the same time as a file variety of 3,983 recent instances pushed the tally to three,21,036.
(Aside from the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV workers and is printed from a syndicated feed.)