Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray on Sunday said that temples and places of worship will open soon in the state. He also said that the state government is working on standard operating procedure for avoiding crowds and ensuring physical distancing there will be drafted after Diwali.
CM Thackeray that said schools - which are also closed since March - would re-open for Classes 9 to 12 after Diwali as well. "We are considering to reopen schools after Diwali while taking all precautionary measures. Religious places will also be allowed to open."
Thackeray said he is getting flak for going slow on reopening of places of religious worship. "We are being careful and not re-opening temples as people will queue up. I am delaying reopening of temples to curb the spread of coronavirus. I am ready to face criticism and those critics will not come forward to take responsibility if virus infection increases," Uddhav Thackeray said.
While addressing people, CM Uddhav Thackeray urged people to celebrate Diwali without firecrackers. While addressing people, CM Uddhav Thakeray said: "Pollution can increase the impact of COVID-19. I appeal to people to not burn firecrackers rather lit earthen lamps. 15 days post-Diwali will be crucial, we should be cautious so that the need for lockdown does not arise again."
"We controlled the rise coronavirus infection due to slew of measures and support of people. But the virus spread is increasing in Delhi due to pollution which may lead to viral pneumonia. So while celebrating Diwali avoid bursting the firecrackers which may cause pollution. Avoid bursting firecrackers in public places."
He said that he will not impose a ban and requested people to show self-disciple and celebrate firecrackers-free Diwali. He also appealed people to avoid bursting firecrackers in public places. "I don't want to enforce a ban. Let us have faith and trust in each other," he said.