The Calcutta high court on Friday ordered that all pandals in West Bengal, where Durga Puja will be held this year, be made no-entry zones for the public, as was directed last year, to curb the spread of Covid-19 infections due to crowding.
A division bench of acting chief justice Rajesh Bindal and justice Rajarshi Bharadwaj passed the order on a PIL seeking a direction to the West Bengal government to make proper arrangements so that there is no large gathering during the Durga Puja festival at different places. The counsel for the petitioners referred to orders passed by the court last year in this regard, submitting that the same protocols be followed for the current year as well in order to prevent the spread of coronavirus that has claimed several thousand lives in the state since its outbreak in March last year.
Chief minister Mamata Banerjee early last month had said that Durga Puja in the state would be held following all the Covid-19 protocols from the last year.
“Last year a series of measures were adopted to hold the Durga Puja due to Covid-19. I don’t think any additional measures are required,” she had said.
State advocate general SN Mukherjee submitted that the previous year’s orders will be followed by the authorities concerned. The bench then disposed of the PIL.
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