Sabarimala temple visit: During the pilgrimage season, Kerala government has decided to open the Sabarimala temple for devotees. The temple is expected to open for over a two month-long pilgrim season. However, everyone visiting the hill shrine of Lord Ayyappa at Sabarimala, according to a report by news agency PTI, have to show a COVID-19 negative certificate if they want an entry for darshan. The temple will be open for all devotees from November 16.
According to the report, the devotees while visiting the temple will have to enter the premises via a virtual queue system. Devaswom Minister Kadakampally Surendran on Monday conducted a high-level online meeting where the decisions in this regard were taken. The meeting also had the participation of N Vasu, who manages the hill shrine and is also the President of the Travancore Devaswom Board (TDB).
It has also been decided that various arrangements before the temple opens will be assessed and made in line with the stringent Coronavirus protocols recommended by the government. It was then that the minister announced that all devotees will have to show a certificate that proves the visitor does not have the novel Coronavirus infection.
The report added that it has been observed that in the backdrop of Coronavirus pandemic, it is pretty difficult for the temple committee to make arrangements for pilgrims and the process is challenging. While strict COVID-19 norms will be followed, only few pilgrims will be allowed for darshan.
Meanwhile, the central government in the last phase of unlocking, allowed temples to open and accept devotees depending on the number of positive COVID-19 cases in states. In Kerala, 35,515 cases have been confirmed for the deadly viral infection so far. Among these, 12,737 cases are currently active, according to the data provided by the state government COVID-19 dashboard.