The popular Navratri festival will not be celebrated in Gujarat this year as Chief Minister Vijay Rupani-led govt in the state on Saturday announced that it would not permit any Garba event anywhere due to the pandemic. The government said it would also not hold the State-level Navratri Mahotsav this year during the festival period from October 17 to October 25. This decision has been taken at the level of State Chief Minister in view of global pandemic.
The government has not yet clarified its stand on whether Navratri celebrations, marked by ‘Garba’ dance, will be allowed to be organised by individuals. However, according to official sources, Rupani has categorically said that no permission will be given to organizing Garba till August end.
In a statement, the government said, “in public interest in view of the pandemic, CM has taken a decision to not allow the Garba celebrations and also not hold the State level event at Ahmedabad.”
“The nine-day traditional state-level Navratri festival, organized by the state government every year will not be celebrated in the larger public interest due to the prevailing COVID-19 pandemic situation this year,” a release quoted Chief Minister Vijay Rupani as saying.
The government’s decision comes at a time when the state has reported over 1.3 lakh confirmed coronavirus cases and more than 3,400 deaths.
The state-level Garba function, held at GMDC Ground in Ahmedabad every year, was started by Prime Minister Narendra Modi when he was chief minister of Gujarat.
The PM had participated in the festival last year and performed ‘aarti’ at the GMDC ground.