Normalcy returns to Guwahati, curfew relaxed in Dibrugarh
Wednesday, 18 December 2019 Normalcy returned in Guwahati while the curfew imposed in Dibrugarh was relaxed for 14 hours since 6am on Wednesday. The curfew imposed in Guwahati, the gateway to the northeast, on December 11 in the wake of protests against the citizenship law was lifted on Tuesday following improvement in law and order, officials said.
Big-budget Durga puja committees in Guwahati decided to lower down the budget this year ahead of COVID-19 pandemic. Bishnupur Sarbajanin Durga Puja Committee has decided not to make a giant pandal this year. The budget of celebration this year has been reduced to Rs. 2 lakh which earlier was Rs. 25 lakh. COVID protocols issued by the government will be followed during the celebration. Around 50 people will be allowed at a time to stand in the ground, which will be regularly monitored and sanitized.
Business of idol makers in Guwahati remained affected ahead of Durga Puja due to COVID-19 pandemic. Idol makers are suffering huge loss this year. An Idol maker said, "We are suffering huge losses this year. We are in trouble."
After months of closure, famous Kamakhya temple in Guwahati reopened for devotees. The inner sanctum sanctorum was closed in view of COVID-19. Devotees were seen visiting the famous temple to perform 'parikrama'. Keeping in mind the COVID spread, 15 minutes have been allotted to each devotee visiting.
As celebration of Durga Puja has became a big challenge amid the COVID-19, Dibrugarh administration has decided to avoid idol worshipping this year. "Due to COVID-19 this year, we held a meeting idol makers and puja committees. They all agreed to avoid idol worshipping," said Deputy Commissioner, Pallav Gopal Jha. Several puja pandals and sculptors also welcomed the decision. Durga Puja will be celebrated in October.
Forest department caught a leopard from a tea garden in Dibrugarh. According to officials, it is a female leopard and will release into a jungle after a clinical check-up. No reports of harm to citizens by leopard have been stated.