The Ayyappa temple at Sabarimala in Kerala on Saturday announced that it will be opened for devotees from July 17 to 21 during the Malayalam month of Karkkidakam. However, devotees with complete COVID vaccination certificates or RTPCR negative report, issued within 48 hrs, will only be allowed.
In view of the COVID-19 situation, only 5,000 devotees who have booked slots through the online system will be allowed darshan on a day.
Only those producing COVID-19-negative certificates from RT-PCR tests done within 48 hours or those who have taken two shots of vaccine will be permitted entry to the temple. The temple will be close after completion of the monthly pujas by July 12 night.
Earlier in May, the temple board had imposed a ban on the entry of pilgrims to the hill shrine in view of the worsening pandemic situation.
Meanwhile, Kerala on Saturday logged 14,087 fresh COVID-19cases,pushing the infection caseload to 30,53,116, while 109 more deaths took the toll to 14,489.
As many as 11,867 people have been cured of the infection, taking the total recoveries to29,22,921 and the number of active cases in the state to 1,15,226, a state government release said.
Malappuram recorded the highest number of cases (1883), followed by Thrissur (1705), Kozhikode (1540),Ernakulam (1465),Kollam (1347), Palakkad (1207) and Thiruvananthapuram (949).
Of the newcases, 53 are health workers, 98 had come from outside the state and 13,240 were infected through contact with the source of contact being not clear in 696 cases, the release said. In the last 24 hours, 1,31,682 samples were tested, taking the cumulative number of specimens examined so far to 2,43,08,000.
The Test Positivity Rate (TPR) stood at 10.7 per cent.
There are currently 3,84,493 people under surveillance in various districts of the state, of whom 3,59,714 are in home or institutional quarantine and 24,779 in hospitals.
(With agency inputs)