Today the second phase of unlocking public places begins. The Indian government announced the SOPs (Standard Operating Procedures) for all the states containing a checklist of protocols that needs to be followed before opening up any public facility.
The health officials will ensure that compliance with the Safety guidelines is done. The facilities will be reviewed for compliance today and will be allowed to function after all points in the checklist of the Standard Operating Procedure are followed.
The temple authorities have also begun their sanitization of the premises and they have been told to make arrangements for crowd management. The temple staff has been instructed to ensure the social distancing for the people visiting the temples. All large gatherings have been prohibited and violation of the safety rules will be dealt with according to the law. The temples have been given special instructions to ensure that touching of idols, books, large feasting, and large discourses are not allowed.
Apart from Varanasi, many places throughout India are also opening up today. It is possible that the number of cases will increase despite safety protocols. This is due to the fact that the enforcement of these safety protocols might not be strictly followed due to negligence. The decision to open up these sites was taken to help the ailing economy which is largely dependent on tourism. The effects of this decision will be seen in the coming months.
The following news report by ‘The Economic Times’ shows all the places of worship currently being opened up throughout India.