After several servitors engaged in the construction of chariots for Rath Yatra tested positive for COVID-19. Chief Administrator of the Puri SJTA Krishan Kumar chaired a meeting on Thursday for discussion regarding smooth conduct of Rath Yatra rituals.
In a press conference, Kumar informed that all servitors engage in chariot construction will be tested for COVID-19. The Chief Administrator clarified that only those who test negative will be allowed to be a part of the construction of the ongoing chariot.
He said, “A decision has been taken that after conducting the test, the sevayats would be kept in the Bhakti Niwas. The results of the test come in 40 hours and after the results come, only the sevayats who test negative will be allowed to continue working on the construction of the chariot. If anyone tests positive, then given the condition of health, we will help them at the COVID care Centre in Puri.”
“The people engaged in chariot construction often have to stay close to each other. It is difficult to maintain social distancing even though we have insisted on wearing masks. Earlier, they were provided with cloth masks, but now a decision has been taken, that we will be giving each carpenter N-94 masks very soon. Sanitizers will also be arranged. We have discussed with the District Collector and the Collector has also taken a decision to create a ‘bio bubble’ and there will be restrictions to entering the same,” He added.