UP govt decides to allowing ‘Kanwar Yatra’, Supreme Court issues notice to Centre

On Wednesday, the Supreme Court took suo motu notice of the Uttar Pradesh government’s decision to allow Kanwar Yatra amid the ongoing Covid-19 epidemic.

It has issued notices to both the central government and the Uttar Pradesh government, and has scheduled a hearing on the matter for July 16.

The development comes amid the UP government’s decision to move ahead with the Kanwar Yatra, even as Uttarakhand has scrapped its annual yatra this year.

Top officials of the UP administration have indicated that they may a negative Covid 19 test report mandatory.

Kanwar Yatra is an annual festival in which Lord Shiva devotees travel either on foot or by bicycle from Haridwar in Uttarakhand to fetch the holy water of the Ganga to their village destinations.

On Tuesday, Awanish Kumar Awasthi
the additional chief secretary (home), said; “It’s status quo in UP. We are talking to kanwar sanghs and everything will be done within the Covid-19 protocol. Even if devotees come from other states to UP, they will have to follow those protocols.”

On July 6, Uttarakhand had decided to stop all Kanwar Yatra devotees from entering the state, but UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath decided to reconsider the move just two days later after Dhami was summoned. Specifically, both states will run in next year’s Assembly elections.

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