Pollution crisis: Now, Gods in Varanasi temples wear anti-pollution mask to aviod toxic air
New Delhi, Nov 07: As air pollution has engulfed North India, especially after Diwali, it seems not only humans, but even gods are now getting affected by the dangerous levels of air pollution.
Due to the bad air quality in Uttar Pradesh's Varanasi, the devotees are trying to help gods avoid the toxic air pollutants by covering their faces with anti-pollution masks.
In an unusual incident, the idols of goddess 'Durga' and 'Kali' were seen donning the masks at a well-known temple in Sigra area in Varanasi town.
The priest of the temple said that it was done after the devotees suggested that the gods should also wear masks to avoid the effects of pollution.
Several photos of the idols of Durga and Kali wearing the masks are doing rounds on social media.
"In summer, the idols are slathered with sandalwood paste to keep them cool and in winter, we cover them in woollens. Likewise, to save them from pollution, we have put masks on their faces," Harish Mishra, a priest at the temple, told news agency IANS.
However, due to the belief that Goddess Kali's propped out tongue should not be covered, the temple later decided to not cover her face, Mishra said.
The priest added that many devotees visiting the temple also started wearing the masks when they saw the idols wearing them.
The priest further said that every individual is contributing to increasing pollution. "Bad air did not deter the people from bursting crackers on Diwali. Now there is smog everywhere. But instead of doing something about it, municipal workers are only adding to the crisis by burning waste in the open. So despite the hue and cry, everyone is just contributing to the emergency. Until people come together to change their habits, the situation will never change.
Meanwhile, in Delhi, the pollution levels recorded on Wednesday, November 6, witnessed some improvement compared to the previous day but still remain in the 'very poor' category.