Gangotri (Uttarakhand) [India], July 29 (ANI): The famous Gangotri Dham in Uttarakhand will remain closed till August 15 in view of the ongoing COVID-19 situation in the country.
The decision to prohibit the entry of pilgrims and tourists was taken by the management, including priests of the holy shrine.
"After due deliberation, we have decided that all pilgrims will be allowed only till the gate which is 2 kilometre away from the sanctum sanctorum here," Suresh Somwal, a priest in the Gangotri Dham Mandir told ANI.
The annual Char Dham Yatra, which is a Hindu pilgrimage, is attended by thousands of devotees every year. The pilgrimage consists of visits to four sites in the Garhwal region --- Yamunotri, Gangotri, Kedarnath and Badrinath.
The Uttarakhand government has already started the registration process for issuing e-passes to pilgrims. According to the official pilgrim registration website of the government, asymptomatic pilgrims from outside Uttarakhand have to clear the RT-PCR test taken within 72 hours before entering the state.
"When all other major pilgrimages have been cancelled this year, including the Amarnath yatra and the Kawar Yatra, we don't understand what the government is trying to achieve by allowing pilgrims for the Char Dham Yatra," Somwal said.
"We are also sending a notice to the district magistrate conveying to him our decision to suspend activities at the temple," he added.
As per official central government figures, Uttarakhand has 2,797 active cases with 70 deceased so far. (ANI)