Cuttack: Like last year, the Cuttack district administration has decided not to allow the historic ‘Baliyatra’ this year in view of possible congregation of people amid the Covid pandemic.
Informing about the district administration’s decision, Cuttack Collector Bhabani Shankar Chayani stated there will be no ‘Baliyatra’ this year as well in Cuttack city in view of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Every year, the seven-day ‘Baliyatra’ festival on the banks of Mahanadi river adjacent to the Barabati Fort draws footfalls of lakhs of people.
The Collector further said despite drop in Covid-19 cases in Cuttack, it is impossible to hold the ‘Baliyatra’ as large number of people are expected to visit the festival.
Locals say ‘Baliyatra’ has been observed for over 1,000 years in Odisha along with Boita Bandana Utsav on the full moon day of Kartik month. To commemorate the day when Odia traders (Sadhabas) used to set sail to distant island of Bali Java, Sri Lanka, Myanmar and Borneo for trade, the ‘Baliyatra’ festival is being celebrated.
In 2020, there was no ‘Baliyatra’ in Cuttack as the Covid-19 cases were on rise in the city.