Covid negative report mandatory for Char Dham

Ravinath Raman, chairman of Char Dham Devsthanam Board which manages the yatra said that situation is being assessed and SOP will be issued soon.

Published: 19th April 2021 11:59 PM  |   Last Updated: 19th April 2021 11:59 PM   |  A+A-

Badrinath-Kedarnath Temple

Negative RTPCR report is mandatory for Char Dham Yatra (File Photo | PTI)

Express News Service

DEHRADUN: Uttarakhand tourism minister Satpal Maharaj said that Covid 19 negative RT-PCR report will be mandatory for pilgrims of Char Dham Yatra scheduled to start next month. 

"We have made the negative RTPCR report mandatory for Char Dham Yatra to ensure that the infection does not spread. Yatra is a matter of faith and we are committed to provide every facility our pilgrims from all over the world, " said Maharaj. 

Ravinath Raman, chairman of Char Dham Devsthanam Board which manages the yatra said that situation is being assessed and SOP will be issued soon.

"The standard operating procedure for Char Dham Yatra will be issued soon and we have decided to keep it pretty much same as last year with all precautions," said Raman who also happens to be the commissioner of Garhwal division of Uttarakhand. 

Analysts said that the government should start preparing in advance otherwise this season will be engulfed by the pandemic like the last one. 

In comparison to over 38 lakh pilgrims visiting the shrines in 2019, only 4.2 lakh visited in 2020.

The SOPs will include many conditions to visit the four revered shrines- Kedarnath, Badrinath, Yamunotri and Gangotri including need to register themselves and get an e-pass. 

However, the duration can be increased in case of any natural calamity which forces pilgrims movement such as landslides, excessive rainfall and others.

The SOP will also include prohibition on entering the sanctom sanctorum of the shrines, wearing of masks compulsory and hordes of other precautionary measures such as applying sanitizers and maintaining social distance. Touching of any idol of any deity and bringing any offering such as flowers or sweets has been prohibited in the SOP.

The state government is also likely to put a limitation to the number of pilgrims visiting every shrine per day. 

Last year, the number of pilgrims were fixed at 800 for Kedarnath, 1200 for Badrinath, 600 for Gangotri and 400 for Yamunotri shrine.  

The standard operating procedure also mentioned that every pilgrim must carry identification and address proof.

India Matters


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