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Delhi govt plans big for Chhath Puja, allocates Rs 25 crore for festival

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New Delhi, Oct 14: The Delhi government has made grand preparations for Chhath Puja at 1,100 sites and allocated Rs 25 crore for the festival, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said on Friday.

Chhath will be celebrated on October 30 and 31.

Devotees perform rituals during Chhath Puja

Kejriwal said Chhath would be celebrated on a grand scale after people were stuck at home for two years due to COVID-19.

"For the last two years, the festivities were affected due to the pandemic," he said.

The Delhi chief minister also urged people to wear masks and observe all safety protocols while celebrating.

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"The intensity of the infection may have reduced but the infection is still there. Please follow Covid-appropriate behaviour and wear a mask. Fines might have gone but please follow the rules," Kejriwal said.

During a digital media briefing, Kejriwal also spoke about how the festival had grown since the formation of the AAP government in 2014.

"Before we came to power, the government would allocate Rs 2.5 crore for making preparations at 69 sites but now, the budget has grown to 25 crore and the sites to 1,100," Kejriwal said.

The chief minister said his government had made arrangements, including setting up tents, chairs, washrooms, ambulances, first-aid and power backup, at the puja sites.

He stressed that Delhi Police was supporting the security aspect and CCTV cameras would be installed at various locations.

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Kejriwal added that people should also pray to "Chatth Maiyya" to provide respite from Covid and also for the progress and development of the country.

Chhath, celebrated after Diwali, involves the offering of "arghya" by fasting women to the Sun god in knee-deep water. The festival is hugely popular among Purvanchalis living in Delhi.

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