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Vaishno Devi Shrine, other religious places re-open


KATRA, 16 AUG.The shrine along with other religious places across the Union Territory reopened for devotees on Sunday morning after remaining closed for almost five months due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

The gates of the shrine reopened for the devotees around 6 am and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Shrine Board (SMVDSB) Ramesh Kumar was seen taking last minute review of the measures to ensure safety of the pilgrims from the dreaded disease.

"The Vaishno Devi pilgrimage was stopped on March 18 as a precautionary measure to prevent the spread of Covid-19 and now when the administration had decided to reopen the religious places, the board had taken all necessary measures keeping in mind the challenge posed by the dreaded disease," Kumar said.

In the first week, there shall be a cap of 2,000 pilgrims each day, of which 1,900 would be from Jammu and Kashmir and the remaining 100 from outside.

"The government has come out with a detailed Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) and the pilgrims are requested to follow the guidelines for their own safety and the safety of others," Kumar said while inspecting the automatic thermal screening point which along with hand sanitizer was set up along the entry point dotted with circles to ensure social distancing.



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