Around 25,000 pilgrims and seers turned up on the ‘symbolic’ Shahi Snan at Kumbh Mela in Haridwar. The number was much less than the previous shahi snans when Haridwar witnessed sea of seers to the tune of 2.8 million (28 lakh).
The month-long Kumbh turned into a major Covid threat after the festival saw a huge congregation of the humans at one place. Despite all claims, officials failed to test seers for Covid-19 till April 15.
After the massive surge in Covid-19 cases, the seers accepted the demand to undergo the tests only after two major ‘shahi snans’ were held.
Rakesh Puri, a seer associated with Niranjani Akhara who was ill due to Covid-19 for the last few days died at the Ashram as Haridwar recorded 1,024 new Covid cases on Tuesday.
According to the reports, since April 15, around 10,000 have tested positive in the holy city.
After the sudden termination of Kumbh Mela, all pilgrims and seers returned to their respective places after testing positive and many of them died including three Mahamandleshwar– seers of the highest order–who attended the Kumbh.
The former King of Nepal Gyanendra who participated in the Kumbh Mela with his wife was tested positive soon he reached Nepal. Shravan of the famous Nadeem-Shravan musical duo from the era of 90s Bollywood music succumbed to Covid in Mumbai after he returned from Haridwar Kumbh.
Ever after the it was announced that the Mela will be limited and it will only be symbolic, as many as 25,000 people took a dip in Ganges.
Meanwhile C Ravishakar, the district magistrate, directed to impose curfew in some cities of the district including Haridwar from tonight till May 3.
With this, Haridwar becomes the 6th district in Uttarakhand besides Dehradun, Pauri, Nainital, Udham Singh Nagar and Champawat to have a complete curfew due to Covid-19.