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Maharashtra's Mumba Devi temple has issued some Covid-19 protocols for devotees as the state is set to reopen places of worship from the Navratri festival, which is on October 7.

The Mumba Devi Temple will open for only fully vaccinated devotees from October 7. Devotees will have to register themselves at the temple's website before entering the premises. Besides, the unvaccinated devotees will have to show a Covid-19 negative certificate. Further, flowers, garlands & prasad will remain prohibited due to the Covid-19 situation, the temple's administration told ANI news agency.

Last month, Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray had announced the reopening of religious places from October 7 and issued an SOP for devotees and officials managing places of worship to ensure strict implementation of coronavirus-related protocols.

CM Thackeray urged people not to drop guard and continue COVID-19-appropriate behaviour because of a possible third wave of the pandemic.

While making the announcement, Thackeray said that Maharashtra has prepared itself for a third wave, but with all precautions, the state is allowing relaxations in various activities. The CM said though infections are declining in the state the coronavirus threat persists. “Although daily COVID-19 cases are showing a declining trend, everybody should take care and follow COVID-19 protocols," he said.

Maharashtra has issued SOPs for devotees and officials managing places of worship ahead of the reopening of religious places. As per the state government, distribution of 'prasad, a sprinkling of holy water, touching of statues, idols, or holy books--all these have been prohibited.

On the other hand, devotees must wear face mask or cover faces while visiting religious place. Moreover, a minimum distance of 6 feet between two persons should be maintained inside the worship places.

The state government advised senior citizens, pregnant women, and children below 10 years of age to remain at home. The management of shrines should provide separate entry and exit points for devotees, if possible, to avoid crowding.

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