Despite the government and apex court issuing stringent protocols for the observance of Durga Puja (amidst COVID-19) in Tripura this year, the situation became unimaginably chaotic.
People had gathered in the puja pandals flouting all norms. While there was overcrowding, several people were also minus face masks.
Infact the situation had raised such an alarm among the concerned civic authorities that the district magistrate of West Tripura, Sailesh Jadav had to close the puja pandal of Bharat Ratna Sangha, one of the largest Durga Puja organizers of Tripura before the idol immersion time.
On Ashtami evening there was an assembly of about a thousand people in the pandal premises of Bharat Ratna Sangha.Pradyut Dhar Chowdhury, general secretary of Bharat Ratna Sangha, had submitted an affidavit along with an application seeking permission for puja organization. In that affidavit it had been declared that they shall allow only 10 to 15 visitors at a time in the club premises and that such gathering will confirm to social distancing norms. However, on 24th October during the evening and night hours, there was an assembly of about a thousand people in the pandal premises of Bharat Ratna Sangha.
Jadav observed, "Earlier one day after Manasa Puja (during immersion) too there had been a massive gathering that subsequently increased the case load of the virus."
The mayhem was not restricted to the Bharat Ratna Sangha pandal alone. It is now to be seen if this mayhem translates to an adverse aftermath.
According to official sources, 640 community clubs had organised Durga puja festivities in West Tripura district alone of which Agartala city is also a part.