After much deliberation, the Delhi Disaster Management Authority (DDMA) on Wednesday gave the nod to Chhath Puja celebrations and reopening of primary classes in Delhi, Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia said.

“As per experts, the Covid-19 situation is under control in the city. Therefore, at the meeting, it was decided that Chhath Puja will be celebrated in the national capital by following all Covid-19 guidelines,” Sisodia said during a press conference, adding that we need to be cautious to contain the spread of the infection.

At the DDMA meeting, it was also decided to reopen primary classes i.e. from nursery to Class 8.

“Students have suffered a huge loss due to shutdown of schools in the wake of Covid-19. It will be difficult to recover that loss. We decided that all primary schools, whether government or private, will be allowed to open from November 1,” he said.

However, there will be a few conditions.

“No parents will be compelled to send their children to school. Classes will be conducted online as well. Only 50 per cent of the class capacity need to be present. Teaching and non-teaching staff need to be vaccinated against Covid-19,” Sisodia said.

A month ago, just when the Navaratri festival had begun, the DDMA had allowed Durga Puja pandals to be set up in the capital with several Covid-19 related restrictions.

Schools for students of Classes IX-XII were reopened on September 1.

Chhath Puja, a prominent festival amongst the Purvanchal community in Delhi, was earlier directed to be celebrated at home. This led to a political furore in the city with BJP MP Manoj Tiwari staging a protest against the Aam Aadmi Party-led Delhi government.

–IANS

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