VIJAYAWADA: Devotee rush increased at Sri Durga Malleswara Swamy Varla Devasthanams (SDMSD) atop Indrakeeladri on Friday three days after the temple was thrown open to public. After conducting the two-day trial run with the temple staff and others on June 9 and 10, temple authorities allowed devotees to have darshan of the presiding deity Goddess Kanaka Durga from June 10.
Anticipating the rush, the temple authorities made elaborate arrangements to ensure the safety of devotees such as arranging hand sanitisers in all the queue lines, sanitising queue lines for every two hours and setting up a disinfectant tunnel. According to temple executive officer MV Suresh Babu, over 2,600 devotees visited the temple on Friday and had darshan of the presiding deity.
He said that only devotees who booked tickets online and current bookings were allowed inside the temple premises after thorough checking and thermal screening. The temple will be opened from 6 am to 5 pm where the devotees will be allowed to have only Mukha Mandapa darshan as Antaralaya darshan was cancelled.
“As the devotee rush is increasing day by day, we have taken steps to ensure that everyone follows social distancing norm to prevent the spread of coronavirus,” the EO explained. Suresh Babu stated that thermal screening and hand sanitising have been made mandatory for devotees and separate queue lines have been set up for entry and exit of devotees.