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Uttar Pradesh govt cancels Kanwar Yatra a day after SC nudge

Annual Kanwar Yatra
Shiva devotees or ‘Kanwariyas’ carry holy water of River Ganga during the annual Kanwar Yatra in 2019 | PTI file photo


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Lucknow: A day after the Yogi Adityanath-led Uttar Pradesh government initiated talks with Kanwar Sanghs (organisations) following a nudge by the Supreme Court, the organisations decided to call off the Kanwar Yatra on Saturday in view of Covid-19.

According to Uttar Pradesh government officials, Additional Chief Secretary Home Avnish Awasthi and DGP Mukul Goel held discussions with the Kanwar Sanghs on the instructions of the Chief Minister. Earlier on July 9, the Chief Minister had said that he would hold talks with the Kanwar Sanghs. “The officers should try to take decisions like last year by communicating with the Kanwar Sangh at the local level. Last year too, after talks with the administration, the Kanwar Sangh had announced the suspension of the yatra,” Adityanath said.

While on Friday, the Supreme Court granted one last opportunity to the Uttar Pradesh government to reconsider its decision of holding “symbolic Kanwar Yatra” amid the COVID-19 pandemic while stressing that the health of the citizens of India and the right to life is paramount.

A Bench headed by Justice Rohinton F Nariman gave an ultimatum to the Uttar Pradesh government to either “reconsider” its decision or the court will pass orders.
Uttarakhand government has already decided to cancel the Kanwar Yatra this year in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Kanwar Yatra, in which Shiva devotees from northern states travel on foot or by other means to collect water from River Ganga at Haridwar, Uttarakhand, to offer at Shiva temples in their areas, was set to begin from July 25


Also read: ‘Not written in vedas’ — Uttarakhand CM Dhami says no to live streaming char dham yatra


 

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