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Odisha government stands firm on idol height, says learn from Kerala

Director of Medical Education and Training (DMET) Dr CBK Mohanty, said tall idols with decorations will attract more visitors leading to crowding at puja pandals.

Published: 16th September 2021 10:59 AM  |   Last Updated: 16th September 2021 10:59 AM   |  A+A-

An artisan busy making an idol of Goddess Durga at a pandal in Cuttack.

An artisan busy making an idol of Goddess Durga at a pandal in Cuttack. (Photo | Express)

By Express News Service

BHUBANESWAR: Warning against crowded festivities, Odisha government on Wednesday, September 15, 2021, said that the State may face a situation similar to Kerala where Covid cases exploded post Onam celebrations. Stating that though the height of idols has nothing to do with the surge in Covid infection, Director of Medical Education and Training (DMET) Dr CBK Mohanty, said tall idols with decorations will attract more visitors leading to crowding at puja pandals.

“Besides, more people are needed to make big size idols and for immersion. The government has decided to cap the size of idols to discourage crowding. People should take Kerala as a case in point. The new cases in the southern State rose exponentially after Onam. The infection rate is under control in Odisha. We should work together to prevent the third wave,” he appealed.

Echoing similar sentiments, Director of Health Services Dr Bijay Mohapatra said people should have devotion in their mind and observe the festivities in such a way that would prevent congregations, which will have serious repercussions on the impending third wave.

“Health is more important than tradition. We can not behave recklessly and allow crowding at markets while celebrating festivals during the crucial phase of the pandemic. It will not only put us at risk but also endanger the lives of others. Complacency will lead to more trouble,” said Dr Mohapatra.

Meanwhile, Odisha reported 457 fresh infections and six deaths taking the tally to 10,17,718 and the death toll to 8,114. The new patients included 73 children and adolescents below 18 years. Khurda recorded the highest 207 fresh cases, including 182 from Bhubaneswar, followed by Cuttack (44) and Balasore (28). Though the overall test positivity rate has dropped below one per cent, it is 3.5 pc in Khurda and 1.4 pc in Cuttack.

The State has been reporting more recoveries than new cases for the sixth consecutive day with 561 people recuperating from the disease on Wednesday. So far, 10,04,164 people have recovered from the disease. With the improvement in the Covid situation, none of the 30 districts is now in the red zone. Of the total 5,387 active cases, Khurda has a maximum of 2,226 patients. The active cases in 22 districts were below 100.

NEW INFECTIONS

457 fresh infections and six deaths in last 24 hours
Khurda recorded the highest 207 fresh cases
TPR dropped below 1 pc



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