Karnataka Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa
Karnataka Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa

Bengaluru: Despite a firm directive from the Centre on keeping places of worship shut due to the spread of COVID-19, Karnataka has decided to open temples from June 1.

Karnataka is the first state to announce the reopening of temples, whereas, other places of worship will remain shut.

The BJP-led state government would soon issue a standard operating protocol to be observed when the temples open.

According to a India Today report, the decision to reopen the temples was announced on Tuesday after Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa held a meeting with his minister for religious and charitable trusts Kota Srinivas Poojary.

Sources revealed that the decision was taken keeping in mind the huge demands by both priests and devotees to re-open the temples in the state.

There are around 34,500 temples under the religious and charitable trusts in Karnataka and all will reopen from June 1.

However, Congress MLA NA Haris questioned the BJP-led government's decision to open only temples and not other places of worship like churches and mosques.

"The government must announce reopening of mosques and churches as well. They were closed together and they have to reopen together. Can't just open temples and not mosques," Haris said.

Yediyurappa was also accused of playing communal politics by Bengaluru's Shanthinagar MLA (NA Haris) following his decision to re-open only temples in the state of Karnataka.

"They can't do politics in name of religion now. If this is the attitude of the government, then the people will teach them the lesson," Haris added.

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