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Health & Fitness India: religious holidays disrupted by the coronavirus pandemic

06:50  01 august  2020
06:50  01 august  2020 Source:   rfi.fr

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Muslims celebrated Eid this Friday while the Hindus honored the goddess Lakshmi, in full pandemic. While many holidays are still to come in August, cities and states are trying with difficulty to limit the crowds.

With our correspondent in New Delhi, Côme Bastin

It was a very special Eid that took place this Friday in India, where there are almost 200 million Muslims. Each state has enacted rules to limit the risk of contagion during this religious holiday, including social distancing in mosques.

In Maharashtra, the purchase of goats sacrificed for the ritual had to be done online, which caused an explosion in prices and anger. In Uttar Pradesh, a member of the Hindu BJP party shocked him by saying that Muslims "had better sacrifice their children than animals".

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Precautions are also required for Hindus, not without difficulties. On the same day, the Goddess of Fortune Lakshmi was celebrated. In Bangalore, the downtown flower market, one of the largest in Asia, was closed to avoid crowds. But this has led the locals to crowd elsewhere, as Mala explains, coming to buy her offerings.

“This year the festival will take place at home. We are going to decorate the goddess with fruits and flowers. But look, Indians are so happy that they forget all the social distancing rules in the markets. It's total chaos here, the authorities should regulate ”.

As the state of Karnataka has become a major focus of the epidemic, the municipality of Bangalore has called on its residents to be cautious. And for good reason: the month of August sees many Hindu festivals such as the birth of the god Krishna and the visit of the god Ganesh. Between health or piety, it may be necessary to choose.

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