Kolkata: Even as the night curfew is being lifted from October 10, Durga Puja revelers till Chathurti didn't stay at home but visited pandals throughout the night.
On Saturday night, on the fourth day of the festivity, both the police and puja committee organizers were seen ‘puzzled’ and ‘helpless’ to manage the crowd.
Deshapriya Park puja in South Kolkata had seen puja revelers till midnight. Puja organizer Sudipto Kumar said that he was finding it hard to manage the crowd and also that he didn’t think that people would follow the state government’s protocol.
“Till midnight people gathered in large numbers and broke the protocols. This was never expected, especially when it’s a government’s announcement,” said Sudipto.
Notably, not just in South Kolkata, people across the city flouted rules. Sometimes police had to resort to lathi charge and somewhere the organizers were seen switching off the lights of the pandal to disperse the crowd.
Sutapa Das, organizer of Hindustan Park puja said even on Friday till 12 midnight people visited her puja premises.
According to a police official, the police across the city had kept a strict vigil and people were asked to abide by the pandemic protocols.
However, after West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee had announced that the night curfew will be lifted on the days of festival it was expected that the people of the city would visit pandals forgetting the norms.
According to police, they will keep even more strict vigil from October 10 so that no untoward incidents happen and people maintain the protocols.
Notably, active COVID-19 cases in West Bengal on October 10 stands at 7,649 with the total number of deaths so far at 18,905. On October 9, the number of active patients was 7,634 and on October 8 the number was 7,625.
The Health Department of the West Bengal government had also issued an advisory that people should not venture out and stay indoors as there is a sudden spike in active cases.