COVID-19: Thrissur Pooram celebrations held in Kerala without people's participation
Thrissur, Kerala: Annual Hindu festival, Thrissur Pooram is being celebrated at Kerala's Thiruvambadi and Paramekkavu Temples on Friday amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The festival, which is celebrated on the day of Pooram as per the Malayalam calendar month of Medam, is popularly known for its parading of elephants, Panchavadyam (percussion ensemble), and mega display of fireworks. Unlike the usual times when the festival attracts huge crowds from across Kerala and other states, owing to the surge in COVID-19 cases in Kerala, the festival is being celebrated without the participation of the common public, once again this year.
The number of participants and elephants in the processions was also reduced in view of the pandemic. Earlier this week, in a meeting held by Kerala's Chief Secretary, had decided that the public would not be allowed at the temples' rituals. Only the organisers of the festival were given permission to be present, but with the guideline to follow COVID-19 protocols. The pronouncement of celebrating Thrissur Pooram in Kerala had invited extensive protests in the state with many writers, artists, and activists opposing the move. As per the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare's data, Kerala has recorded 20,597 COVID-19 cases and 28 related deaths in the past 24 hours.