Lord Jagannatha temple in Odisha's Puri will remain closed for devotees on Dussehra (October 15) and Diwali (November 4), the temple administration said on Thursday.
In order to avoid any spike in transmission of Covid-19 on account of the large gathering that is anticipated on such festive occasions, the temple will remain closed for public darshan on Friday, said the Shree Jagannatha Temple Administration (SJTA) in its revised SOP.
As per the fresh SOP, which will come into force with effect from October 15, the temple will remain closed for darshan of Lords from 12 noon onwards on October 16 (Bhasani), November 4 (Diwali), November 15 (Bada Ekadashi) and November 19 (Kartika Purnima). However, the temple will remain open on October 20 (Kumar Purnima) for darshan.
The temple will continue to remain closed for public darshan on all Sundays as a measure to contain the spread of the coronavirus and to sanitize the temple premises. The darshan timings will be from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. on all days, when the temple will remain open, the SOP said.
The prevailing Covid-19 restrictions will continue. All devotees visiting the temple will have to produce the final certificate for Covid-19 vaccination (of having taken two doses) or RT-PCR negative certificate of testing done within 96 hours prior to their visit to the temple.
The SJTA advised senior citizens, children, persons having co-morbidities, pregnant women not to visit the temple in view of the prevailing Covid situation.