As Covid-19 cases surge in West Bengal, high court makes Durga Puja pandals no entry zones for visitors
All Durga Puja pandals in West Bengal have virtually been declared no-entry zones by Calcutta High Court which ordered a ban on pandal hopping on Monday due to the spread of the coronavirus disease (Covid-19). Only organisers can enter the pandals and names of people allowed to enter have to be displayed outside it, the order from the high court said.
The order comes amid heightened fervour and enthusiasm among people to celebrate the five-day long Durga Puja festival, starting Tuesday.
The state’s death toll went past the 6,000-mark on Sunday with 64 more fatalities, even as a record number of 3,983 fresh cases pushed the tally to 3.21 lakh.
In West Bengal, Durga Puja is celebrated in a grand manner with increased participation from the state government. Every year, nearly 37,000 pandals are set up and bring an economic boom.
For the uninitiated, Dhan Mill Compound, a former granary and a cluster of warehouses, has morphed into the city’s modish food, fashion, design and lifestyle destination. Its streets are lined with art cafes, home décor outlets, ateliers, art galleries, pottery studios, dance halls and high-end boutiques, whose facades and interiors are as interesting and experimental as the wares they deal in. Interestingly, all of these fancy establishments are housed in re-purposed warehouse buildings, which still have metal roofs.
According to a Delhi government official, a break-up of the total jobs, including the list of employers and the number of people they hired, will be shared “in a couple of days”. Notably, the government portal was launched by chief minister Arvind Kejriwal on July 27, 2020, to help entry-level and blue-collar job seekers connect with employers at a time when the Covid-19 induced lockdown left many people unemployed.
“Manufactures, and start-ups which are working on alternatives to single-use plastic have to pay more GST for raw material. Hence, the Delhi government will write to the Centre and request a reduction in GST rates,” Delhi environment minister Gopal Rai said.
Safdarjung, Delhi’s base weather station, recorded 0.1mm of rainfall between 8:30am and 5:30pm on Sunday. The Capital recorded 1.9mm of rainfall on Saturday and 117.2mm on Friday, making the monthly total 119.2mm so far. The normal monthly average for July is 210.6mm, said weather experts.
Monsoon elevates Adam Khan’s tomb into an emergency sanctuary for passersby (and dogs) speared by sudden showers. Perched atop a Mehrauli hillock, the monument overlooks the Qutub Minar, which appears totally bechara and defenceless in the heavy rain.