KATHMANDU, Oct 17: The government has directed all Hindu temples and shrines across the country to conduct only the daily rituals during Navaratri, the Dashain festival.
The Ministry of Home Affairs, issuing a notice to all 77 District Administration Offices, directed local units to observe only daily rituals in temples and shrines.
The decision was made in order to avoid large gatherings amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
Earlier, the government had also urged the general public to stay where they are and observe Dashain and Tihar festivals.
Navaratri Parba" or the nine-night festival of Bada Dashain, the great festival of the Hindus, starts today.
In normal times, devotees flock to Naxal Bhagawati, Shobha Bhagawati, Maitidevi, Guheswori, Bhadrakali, Kalikasthan, Sankata, Mahankalsthan, Naradevi, Bijeshwori, Indrayani, Dakshinkali, Chamunda and other shrines of goddess Durga Bhavani in the early morning during Navaratri.
While the Valley and some other districts are witnessing a surge in daily COVID-19 cases, the government has urged people to avoid unnecessary gatherings, and celebrate Dashain and Tihar following health and safety protocols.