Ranchi (Jharkhand) [India], November 16 (ANI): While standing in a pond, the members of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in Jharkhand on Monday staged a protest against Chief Minister Hemant Soren-led government over the ban on Chhath puja celebrations on the banks of water bodies in view of the COVID-19 pandemic and accused government to be anti-Hindu.
"We are protesting here against the order of govt for banning Chhath puja celebrations on the banks of water bodies. While standing into an unclean water body for almost one hour here, we are demonstrating 'Jalashaya Hath Yoga' against the decision. This is an attack on our beliefs," said Ranchi MP, Sanjay Seth.
The protesters have asked the government to immediately revoke this order. They also accused the government to be 'anti-Hindu'.
"The Hemant Soren-led grand alliance government with Congress party and Rashtriya Janata Dal are banning festivals of Hindus only, not of other communities. The government is doing appeasement politics," said CP Singh, Ranchi MLA
Member of Parliament from Ranchi, Sanjay Seth, and Member of Legislative Assembly (MLA) CP Singh demonstrated a protest against the decision of the government. Hatia MLA Naveen Jaiswal, Kanke's MLA Samri Lal, and their supporters were also present at dharna here.
The Jharkhand government has decided to ban organizing Chhath puja celebrations on the banks of water bodies in view of the COVID-19 pandemic. Chhath puja is mainly observed by the people of Bihar, Jharkhand, and bordering areas in Uttar Pradesh, and it will be celebrated on November 20. "The ritual of holy bathing in common waters of river/pond/lake/dam/reservoir/any other water body and standing in water is a matter of serious concern as it will amount to sharing of water thus enhancing the chances of spread of infection besides causing the contamination of the water," read the order by Jharkhand government.
Chhath is dedicated to the Sun God and is one of the most popular festivals for the people of Bihar and parts of Uttar Pradesh or Purvanchal. Devotees gather and take a holy dip in rivers, ponds, and other water bodies during the four-day festivities. Jharkhand reported 129 new COVID-19 cases on Sunday, taking the total number of infections in the state to 1,06,064, according to the data released by the state health department. Currently, there are only as many as 2,952 active COVID-19 cases in the state.
As many as 10,186 COVID-19 tests were conducted on Sunday taking the total number of samples tested in the state so far to 37,90,900, the data revealed. (ANI)