Row over report against organising Thrissur Pooram, government says it’s on

DMO denies submitting report, says she only wants adherence to Covid protocol during fest

Published: 12th April 2021 06:26 AM  |   Last Updated: 12th April 2021 06:26 AM   |  A+A-

Kudamattom ceremony during Thrissur Pooram | File pic

Express News Service

THRISSUR: With Thrissur Pooram barely a fortnight away, a controversy surfaced on Sunday after a report circulated in media that the district medical officer (DMO) had submitted a report against organising the festival with public participation in view of the rise in Covid cases.

Soon after, Agriculture Minister V S Sunilkumar said the festival will be held. He said in the wake of the rise in infections, discussions would be held in the presence of the pooram organising committee and decisions would be taken on abiding by the Covid protocol. 

“Many people depend on the festival for revenue. Last year, the situation was such that we were compelled to cancel the festival. This time, the festival will be held. The preparations are in final stage,” he said.  
However, DMO K J Reena denied submitting such a report to the government. 

“I am not against conducting Thrissur Pooram. All I sought was that Covid protocol be followed. People in Thrissur have always followed the government’s instructions related to the pandemic and I am sure they will understand the present situation,” she said.

On Sunday and Saturday, the district recorded 423 and 530 new cases, respectively. The test positivity rate (TPR) was 9.5 per cent on Saturday, a huge jump from last month’s 1.8 per cent. Reena said as per the report of the health department, the TPR would double in the next 12 days.She said people should voluntarily restrain from gathering in large numbers during the festival for their safety. 

Guidelines sought

Considering the circumstances, District Collector S Shanavas sought guidelines from the government in conducting the pooram. He sought a meeting with higher officials, including the chief secretary, for the festival’s conduct, in view of the rising infections. Doors for the pooram exhibition will be opened for the public from Monday. Works on the ‘Panthal’ and other decorations have already begun. Devaswom members of temples participating in the pooram are being vaccinated. Works on parasols for Kudamattom, caparisons for elephants and others are also in final stage.


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