Puri Ratha Jatra: Bio-bubble created for servitors engaged in chariot construction

Puri: Keeping in view the severity of the COVID-19 second wave in the state, the Shree Jagannath Temple Administration (SJTA) with the help of the district administration has decided to create a bio-bubble at Ratha Khala (place for construction of chariots for Ratha Jatra) here.

A bio-bubble is a secure sanitized area sealed from the outside world and only accessible by an approved set of people.

The decision on adopting the bio-bubble technique was taken after eight servitors tested positive for the virus recently.  The eight infectees,( three Maharana servitors and five Bhoi servitors) have been kept under isolation at a COVID Care Centre set up by the temple administration.

Collector Samarth Verma said, “the bio-bubble will keep the servitors, who are engaged in constriction of chariots, safe from COVID-19 infection as they will not come in contact with outsiders. Only those associated with the chariot construction work will be allowed to enter the bio-bubble starting today.” 

Inside the bio-bubble, thermal screening of the servitors will be regularly conducted and they will undergo the test frequently, he said adding that even journalists will be completely restricted to enter the area.

Earlier yesterday, SJTA Chief Krishan Kumar said total 88 servitors had been kept under isolation for chariot construction work. All of them had undergone COVID-19 test and results of eight came out positive. The infected servitors have been sent for treatment. Currently, 80 servitors are engaged at Ratha Khala.

Construction of the chariots began on the auspicious occasion of Akshaya Tritiya on May 15. The annual car festival is scheduled to begin on July 12.

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