GUWAHATI: COVID-19 pandemic has dampened the Durga Puja festivity across the state. Following the guidelines issued by the Assam Government, the artisans in Guwahati are making miniature Durga idols this year.
The idol makers at Pandu in the city stated that business is largely hit by the pandemic.
“There are only 15-16 orders this time. We are making miniature idols this year. Idols are not above 5 ft in height,” said an idol maker.
The Assam Government has already issued (standard operating protocols) for Durga Puja, which is scheduled to begin from October 22.
The SOPs state that all puja organisers need special permission from district authorities. Pandals must be open on all sides, and masks and hand sanitisers are compulsory.
Only 50 people will be allowed into a pandal at any given time. Pandals must close by 10 pm and restaurants an hour earlier than that. Also, no procession with idols will be allowed.
All priests, organisers and volunteers must also provide negative COVID-19 tests before and after Durga Puja.
On the other hand, pillion riding for the men has been restricted. It is allowed for women and kids.