‘I personally do not agree’: Goa withdraws Ganesh Utsav SOPs after CM objects

The state government had listed several SOPs for the upcoming Ganesh Chaturthi festival including a ban on priests visiting homes for rituals, as well as households having COVID-19 patients being barred from inviting guests or visiting others.
‘I personally do not agree’: Goa withdraws Ganesh Utsav SOPs after CM objects
Chief Minister Pramod Sawant inaugurating he Fairfield by Goa Marriott at Marriott Benaulim on Tuesday, September 8, 2021

The Goa government on Tuesday withdrew the Ganesh Utsav Standard operating procedures (SOPs) in the state, within hours after introducing, after Chief Minister Pramod Sawant expressed his disapproval.

Sawant said the SOP was issued by mistake and his government understood the sentiments of people, as everyone wanted priests to come to their homes and perform rituals.

“I personally do not agree with some of the guidelines that were issued in the SoP, especially the one stopping priests from going to individual households for puja. Ganesh Chaturthi is the most important festival in Goa and such rituals are an integral part of it,” Pramod Sawant said on microblogging platform Twitter.

“While the expert committee may have suggested such curbs, I have asked the administration to withdraw the SoP immediately. Chaturthi must be celebrated with full fervour while taking all the necessary precautions, given the pandemic”.  

I personally do not agree with some of the guidelines that were issued in the SoP , especially the one stopping priests from going to individual households for puja. Ganesh Chaturthi is the most important festival in Goa and such rituals are an integral part of it. 1/2

— Dr. Pramod Sawant (@DrPramodPSawant)

The state government had listed several SOPs for the upcoming Ganesh Chaturthi festival including a ban on priests visiting homes for rituals, as well as households having COVID-19 patients being barred from inviting guests or visiting others.

The SOPs also prevented the elderly and children from visiting idol-making workshops, barring those with a member in home isolation from hosting or visiting others, restricting idol immersion timing from 5 pm to 10 pm, mandatory face cover and hand sanitisers, not more than five people in vehicles carrying Ganesh idols.

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