Madhya Pradesh’s holy city bans post cremation rituals, ash immersion at ghats to contain Covid spread


By Express News Service

BHOPAL: In perhaps the first of its kind development, the pandas (priests) in Madhya Pradesh’s world famous religious city Ujjain have announced the haulting of post cremation rituals and ash immersion rituals on the ghats near the sacred Kshripra river.

“In consultation with the local administration and discussion with other members of our body, we’ve decided to stop Uttar Karma Vidhan Sanskar and Asthi Visarjan (post cremation rituals and ash immersion) on all ghats between Kaliadeh Mahal and Shani Mandir, dotting river Kshipra in Ujjain till further orders of the local authorities,” Ujjain Sri Kshetra Panda Samiti head Rajesh Trivedi announced on Thursday.

“We appeal to all devout and pilgrims not to come to Ujjain for the Uttar Karma Vidhan Sanskar and Asthi Visarjan. With the situation already being grim in Ujjain, there is a risk of outsiders either contracting the COVID infection from local residents or else infecting local people in case visitors are asymptomatic cases. Stay wherever you are and perform all post cremation rituals there only to protect selves and others from the deadly infection,” Trivedi appealed.

Besides Kashi and Prayagraj in Uttar Pradesh, Ujjain in MP, is also the most frequented religious city, where people flock to perform post cremation rituals and ash immersion.

Ghats dotting the Kshipra river in the West MP city, including Gau Ghat, Siddhvat Ghat and Ram Ghat witness a huge rush of devotees, particularly those coming for post cremation rituals.

Ujjain is among the 30-odd districts of MP, which are witnessing triple digit daily spike in COVID cases.

During the last 24 hours, Ujjain reported 410 new cases and two deaths over the last 24 hours, while 454 patients recovered from the viral infection. Ujjain which is among the top five districts in MP in terms of COVID infection, has reported 14,500 positive cases and 155 deaths since March 2020.

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