Sharmili Mallick

Athagarh: The Dhabaleswar Temple, one of the major Shiva shrines of Odisha, situated in Athagarh area of Cuttack district reopened its doors for all devotees on Monday after a long Covid-19-induced gap of nine months.

The shrine was opened for the family members of the servitors on January 8, while the people of adjacent Mancheswar Gram Panchayat were allowed entry to the temple on January 9 and 10.

Today, devotees from across the State are being allowed to have the darshan of Lord Dhabaleswar amid strict adherence to all Covid-19 protocols issued by the government.

Chants of 'Jai Baba Dhabaleswar' and ‘Haribol’ resonated Dhabaleswar Temple as devotees are thronging the shrine since early morning, said reports.

"The temple reopened for all the devotees after an interval of over nine months. The doors of the shrine opened at 4 AM following which Snana, Mangala Alati, Bada Singar Bhoga Lagi and other rituals were conducted," said a priest of the Shiva temple.

Circles have been drawn all along the queue line to ensure physical distancing inside the temple. Use of masks and sanitisers have been made mandatory for the devotees coming to the temple for the darshan of the deities.

A maximum of 50 people are being allowed to enter the temple at a time.

"I am delighted and speechless after having the darshan of Baba Dhabaleswar after over nine months. I thank the administration for opening the temple for devotees. Adequate arrangements have been put in place to avoid gathering and maintain social distancing inside the temple," said a devotee.

(Edited By Rashmi Ranjan Mohanty)

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