Karnataka government allows public celebration of Ganesh festival with conditions applied | Bengaluru News

BENGALURU: Karnataka state government has permitted public celebration of Ganesh Chaturthi for maximum five days from September 10 with strict covid norms applicable while cultural programmes and processions are prohibited.
Chief minister Basavaraj Bommai on Sunday consulted domain experts and his ministerial colleagues amid pressure being mounted on the government to allow public celebrations of Ganesh festival and it was decided during an hour-long meeting that restricted permission can be given.
“The government has decided to permit installation of Ganesh idols in public for a maximum of five days only in the districts where covid test positivity rate is less than 2%. The idols must be immersed within five days at designated ponds, but procession is not allowed while taking the idol for immersion,” said revenue minister R Ashoka after the meeting
According to the guidelines issued after the meeting, only one public pandal is allowed in a civic ward in urban areas, while local administration will decide on how many idols can be installed publicly in rural areas.
The area of a public pandal is restricted to 50X50 ft and it is a must that the organisers are vaccinated and Ashoka said the government has asked the local bodies to hold vaccination drives for the organisers at the site of celebration.
No idol installation or celebration is allowed at schools and colleges.
“We have decided not to allow cultural programmes at the pandals and DJ is strictly prohibited,” said Ashoka, adding the pandals should not be erected at the places where it causes inconvenience to the public.
The government has capped the height of the idols at two feet if installed at homes and four feet for public installation, on the lines of last year’s restriction. It is mandated that the idol should be made of eco-friendly material.
While the idols should be immersed only at the designated tanks or ponds, Ashoka will chair a meeting of Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike officials on Monday to decide on the modalities and places for idol immersion. The BBMP is likely to deploy mobile tanks and Karnataka State Pollution Control Board identify the places for immersion.
The existing night curfew continues during the festival celebration and people are prohibited from venturing out after 9 pm.

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