There has been a sharp increase in the number of daily coronavirus infections being reported in India in the past weeks. In view of the alarming COVID-19 situation in the country, several states and union territories have announced a ban on public celebrations of Holi festival 2021. Moreover, the central government has also advised all states and union territories to impose COVID-19 restrictions ahead of the festival season.
Listed below are states, UTs that have imposed COVID-19 curbs or banned public Holi celebrations:
In Maharashtra, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) -Mumbai’s civic body, has announced that Holi celebrations will not be allowed in private or public places on March 28 and 29.
In Pune, too, district and civic authorities have banned Holi celebrations in public and private places, including hotels, resorts, etc. Housing societies have also been told not to allow Holi celebrations on their premises.
No public celebrations will be allowed for Holi 2021. Delhi Chief Secretary Vijay Dev, in an order, said: “All authorities concerned will ensure that public celebrations and gatherings, congregations during upcoming festivals like Holi, Shab-e-Barat, Navaratri etc shall not be allowed in public places/public grounds/public parks/markets/religious places etc in NCT of Delhi.”
- West Bengal:
In West Bengal’s Kolkata, gated communities have been advised against allowing Holi gatherings. Additionally, clubs have also been told to drop Holi celebration plans.
Holi celebrations have been banned in public places in Odisha in view of rising COVID-19 cases in pockets. However, people have been allowed to celebrate Holi with family members inside their houses this time.
While celebration of Holi by way of playing with colours will not be permitted this year, the Gujarat government has allowed people to host the religious ritual of ‘Holika Dahan’, provided COVID-19 protocols are followed.
- Uttar Pradesh:
The Uttar Pradesh government has directed concerned authorities to test people arriving in the state for Holi celebrations from states where the COVID-19 situation is alarming. Additionally, prior approval will be required to hold public programmes.
However, rain dance parties and other such dance programmes that are held in the open have been banned in the state’s capital.
- Madhya Pradesh:
Several cities in Madhya Pradesh, including Indore and Bhopal are currently under lockdown. The Chief Minister has advised people to celebrate Holi at home.
All Holi-related celebrations have been cancelled and clubs and restaurants have been directed to not organise any programme. Holi celebration at home has been allowed.
Also, Sukhna Lake, Sector 17 Plaza, and all parks in Chandigarh will remain closed for public on March 29 from 6 am to 6 pm.
The Haryana government has banned public celebrations of Holi festival 2021 to avoid COVID-19 spread. Home and Health Minister Anil Vij said: “The Haryana government has banned public celebrations of Holi in view of (rise in number of cases of) corona…”.
To avoid COVID-19 spread due to Holi celebrations 2021, the Bihar government has banned ‘Holi-Milan’ gatherings.
In Karnataka, public gatherings at parks, markets, religious places, etc., for festivals such as Holi, Shab-e-Barat, and Good Friday have been banned. Action will be taken against those found violating the COVID-19 curbs.