Cremation of non-Puri residents not to be allowed at Swarga Dwara

Puri: Cremation of non-Puri district residents will not be allowed at the Swarga Dwara here from January 10 in view of the COVID-19 situation.

The decision has been taken by the district administration in a bid to curb the surge in COVID-19 infections.

The restriction will be effective at the crematorium till further orders.

The Shree Jagannath Temple here will also remain closed for devotees from January 10 till January 31 in view of the surge in COVID-19 cases, informed Puri Collector Samarth Verma today.

A decision in this regard was taken at a meeting between Shree Jagannath Temple Administration (SJTA) and Chhatisa Nijoga, this evening.

Though the 12th century shrine will remain out of bounds for devotees, rituals of the deities will continue.

COVID-related safety measures for servitors such as COVID Care Centre, ambulance, Rapid Response Team and medical checkup were also discussed at the meeting, the official said.

If the COVID situation prevails after January 31, appropriate decision regarding the closure of the temple will be taken, he said.

The decision comes after detection of several COVID-19 cases inside the temple.

Several employees of Shree Jagannath Temple Administration (SJTA) and servitors have tested positive for COVID-19, the Collector had earlier said.

Puri district today reported 54 COVID-19 positive cases while the state reported as many as 2703 fresh infections.

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