Mumbai: The annual traditional Gudi Padwa celebration and the famous shobha yatra (women bike rallies) across Maharashtra is likely to be cancelled this year owing to 'social distancing' amid the coronavirus outbreak across the globe.
The Dadar-Mahim area, which witnesses maddening rush ahead and during Gudi Padwa every year, will don a deserted look this year during the festival as all shops will remain shut.
One of the most popular summertime festivals of Maharashtra, Gudi Pawda is considered as beginning of the Hindu calender in the state.
The Maharashtrian New Year is ushered in with much pomp and show across the city.
This year, following the outbreak, the BrihanMumbai Municipal Corporation has decided to allow shops on the streets to operate for only four days a week. Shops will remain open on alternates days.
In a reply to the ward office's notice, Dadar Vyapari Sangh (an umbrella body of 1000 shopkeepers/ traders in Dadar) has decided to follow a complete shut down till Tuesday night, a day ahead of the festival.
" Post Tuesday, we will take a call looking at the situation. In a time like this, it is out duty to support the government and the BMC. The call has been taken in support of the government and for the safety of the masses," said VK Naik, secretary of Dadar Vyapari Sangh.
It is a mega event that is not just a riot of colours, but is also about the rich Maharashtrian culture. Every year, the celebrations witness hundreds of women on scooters and motor bikes participating in the shobha yatras wearing gorgeous traditional costumes.