Kanwar Yatra Pilgrimage Suspended This Year Due to COVID-19 Spread

UP, Uttarakhand and Haryana, in view of COVID-19, have taken a joint decision to suspend the annual Kanwar Yatra.

2 min read
Kanwar yatra is an annual pilgrimage that devotees of Lord Shiva undertake during the Hindu holy month of Shravan.

The states of Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand and Haryana, in view of the coronavirus outbreak, have taken a joint decision to suspend the annual Kanwar Yatra that was scheduled to begin from 6 July.

Kanwar Yatra is an annual pilgrimage of Shiva devotees that takes place every year during the Hindu holy month of Sravana.

According to a UP government spokesman, the decision to not allow the Kanwar Yatra came after a video-conference between Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath and Chief Ministers of Uttarakhand and Haryana – Trivendra Singh Rawat and Manohar Lal Khattar respectively – late on Saturday, 20 June night, IANS reported.

The chief ministers said kanwar sanghs in their respective states proposed suspending the yatra in view of COVID-19 and after deliberating over it they took the decision in the public interest, PTI reported citing an official release.

UP CM Adityanath also directed senior police officials and divisional commissioners to inform religious leaders, Kanwar associations and peace committees about the decision.

The government spokesperson said, "The chief minister has said that religious leaders and Kanwar associations should, in turn, appeal to devotees not to take out the yatra this year in view of the pandemic. It has also been decided to strictly implement COVID-19 protocols during the Shiva temples in the month of 'Saawan'."

A large number of Shiva devotees visit Shiva temples in Haridwar, Gaumukh and Garhmukteshwar to take a holy dip in Ganges. They fill pots with Ganga Jal, which they then carry back to temples near their homes.

In 2019, over four crore devotees visited Haridwar alone during the auspicious month of Sravana.

(With inputs from IANS & PTI)

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