178 Pandals, Melody & Orchestra Till Midnight, Bhubaneswar Set To Celebrate Durga Puja In Grand Manner

Bhubaneswar: Durga Puja is all set to be celebrated in a grand manner in Odisha capital after a gap of two years due to COVID restrictions.

“The city will have 178 Durga puja pandals, which is more than those being erected in Cuttack, and cultural programmes at puja pandals will be allowed till midnight,” Mayor Sulochana Das informed after a coordination meeting at the Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation (BMC) on Monday.

“We are in for a grand celebration and the excitement among people is palpable since Odisha has been witnessing a downward trend in new COVID cases,” she said

Clarifying that there are no mandatory COVID restrictions, Das requested all stakeholders and devotees to maintain basic COVID hygiene and wear a mask while venturing out.

The decision on Ravan Podi will be taken by Commissionerate Police, she said, adding that huge gatherings of devotees are expected this year.

The meeting also decided that all potholes under BMC limits will be filled and repaired before puja.

“We will coordinate with all the puja committees to ensure cleanliness around the pandal. Drinking water and toilet facility will also be ensured during Puja. Each puja committee will appoint a nodal person who will be responsible for this,” said BMC Commissioner Vijay Amruta Kulange while stressing hassle-free festivities.

Power distribution company (TPCODL) and PWD officials were also invited to the meeting to ensure no electrical short circuit or fire mishaps occur during the puja.

“Teams have been formed with seven food safety inspectors to check the quality of food in hotel kitchens, sweet shops and fast food stalls,” Kulange said.

The BMC will create 4-5 temporary ponds in Bhubaneswar for immersion of their idols, he added.

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