After a gap of three months, all temples and religious institutions reopened for devotees in Khordha district with strict adherence to Covid protocols.
However, no decision has been taken on reopening of temples and religious sites in Bhubaneswar city. The decision lies with the Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation (BMC).
As per the guidelines issued for Khordha district, temples and religious places will remain open from 6 am to 6 pm every day. No religious or spiritual congregation is allowed in any of the places of worship, officials said.
Devotees will have to follow Covid appropriate behaviour while entering the temples and other places worship. As per the State government’s guidelines, no devotees can take Bhoga or puja material inside the temple.
Use of mask and maintaining social distancing is mandatory for devotees as well as priests.
Earlier, temples in Cuttack, Puri, Sambalpur, Koraput, Jajpur had already reopened amid Covid protocols. However, restrictions have been imposed on some of the famous Shiva shrines in anticipation of heavy congregation of Bol Bom devotees.
The Shree Jagannath Temple in Puri will open from August 16. General devotees will have to wait till August 23 as the local residents will be allowed darshan for the first five days. The temple will remain closed every weekend. Devotees have to show Covid vaccine double dose certificate or Covid negative report to gain entry into the temple.
The Sun temple at Konark in the district reopened already for the tourists. It is remaining open every day for the public while other shrines in the district will remain closed on every weekend.
All the religious institutions across the State had remained shut for public since April due to the second wave of Covid-19 pandemic.