The Uddhav Thackeray led MVA (Maha Vikas Aghadi) government has banned the Chhath Puja in Mumbai citing high numbers of Chinese Virus cases in the state and city as a reason. The decision has been taken by the BMC (Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation), the civic authority administering the city which is presently under Uddhav Thackeray’s Shiv Sena.
The civic body on Tueday turned down the request by the migrant population from Bihar to hold the Chhath Puja on Friday 20th November stating that Puja will not be allowed at the city’s beaches, riverbanks and ponds. Contrast this with the MVA government giving in to the demands of Raza Academy, involved in the Azad Maidan riots, by allowing Eid processions and celebrations in October even though the threat of pandemic was higher and when it had placed restrictions on Hindu festivals such as Ganesh Chaturthi and Navaratri.
Earlier the Calcutta High Court (HC) had banned Chhath Puja processions and permitted only two persons per family to enter water bodies for Puja. Similarly, the Delhi government has decided to ban community Chhath Puja celebrations at the city’s ghats.
Order issued by Deputy CM Manish Sisodia in this regard reads “Chhat Pooja is an important festival for the people of NCT of Delhi. Accordingly, Government of NCT Delhi has decided to declare 20th November as public holiday on account of Chhat Pooja. Necessary notification in this regard may be issued”.
The Delhi HC has upheld the Delhi government’s decision to ban the festival and observed “you have to be alive first to celebrate rituals of any religion. Are you not aware of coronavirus situation in Delhi?”
The arrogance and indifference towards Hindus and Hindu festivals by both the judiciary and elected state governments is apparent as minorityism has become the norm and the courts and state governments want to be politically correct. The same courts and state governments allowed Eid processions when the pandemic was at its peak and the risk was significantly higher.
In the meanwhile, the CM Yogi Adityanath led Uttar Pradesh (UP) government has issued an advisory requesting devotees to perform the Puja at their homes or near their homes as much as possible while at the same time making arrangements for celebrations at the traditional ponds and river spots. The UP government is will ensure that there are changing room facilities near the ghats for women and provisions for ambulance and team of medical experts are also being made.
Chhath Puja is an ancient Hindu festival dedicated to the deity Surya and Shashthi devi (Chhathi Maiya) in order to thank them for bestowing the bounties of life on earth. It is mostly celebrated in the states of Bihar, Jharkhand and Uttar Pradesh and the Madhesh region of Nepal. This year Chhath Puja falls on November 20.
(Featured Image Source: India TV)
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