Thiruvananthapuram (Kerala) [India], Mar 20 (ANI): In the wake of COVID-19 threat, the Kerala government has directed the Travancore Devaswom Board and the Pathanamthitta district administration to restrict the entry of pilgrims to the 10 day-long annual Sabarimala Temple festival that will begin on March 29.
The rituals will be observed at the Sabarimala festival that begins with Kodiyettam (hoisting flag) on March 29. Pilgrims will also not be allowed to attend the 'Ararat ceremony' on April 8 at Pampa.
In Pathanamthitta district where Sabarimala is located, till date, nine people have been confirmed with COVID-19. There are 235 primary contacts in the district, 501 in the secondary contact list who are in home quarantine.
The Pathanamthitta district medical officer had reported to the district collector that the incidents of the COVID-19 disease in the country has had serious consequences and the spread among pilgrims to Sabarimala will have serious consequences.
According to the report, the collector, who is also the chairman of the District Disaster Management Authority, submitted a report to the government seeking restrictions on pilgrims.
Following this, Devasom Minister Kadakampally Surendran took the decision. (ANI)