Madikeri: Virajpet BJP MLA K.G. Bopaiah said that the Cauvery Theerthodbhava at Talacauvery, the birth place of River Cauvery, will be celebrated in a simple manner on Oct. 17 in the wake of COVID-19 pandemic.
Presiding over the Theerthodbhava preparatory meeting at Bhagamandala on Saturday, Bopaiah said that, however, the Theerthodbhava will be performed with all traditional and customary rituals and pujas.
Appealing the public from other districts not to come to Talacauvery for the event in the wake of rampant spread of Coronavirus, he said that those attending the event will have to mandatorily produce a ‘COVID Negative’ report or otherwise they will not be allowed to take part.
Explaining the precautionary and safety measures that are taken, he said that Theerthodbhava will occur at 7.03 am on Oct. 17, when the morning cold will be chill, he appealed the public to take all precautionary and safety measures. He also advised that children and senior citizens should keep off the event as a safety measure.
Pointing out that bathing at Talacauvery water pond will not be allowed this time, he said that the KSRTC has been directed not to operate special buses for the event. He also asked private bus operators not to bring in more number of devotees to Talacauvery on Oct. 17.
Referring to reports that some outside people were coming to Talacauvery shrine for partying, Bopaiah said that Talacauvery is a holy shrine and hence, it should be maintained as such.
Pointing out that partying and such other activities have been strictly banned all around the shrine, the MLA said that everyone should understand that Bhagamandala and Talacauvery are not tourist spots, but are religious places having great sanctity.
He directed Dy.SP Dinesh Kumar to book those found partying at these spots and file charge-sheet against them. He also instructed the Police to deploy more personnel at the spot on public holidays for keeping a check on partying and entertainment activities.
Congress MLC Veena Achaiah said, it is important that everyone attending Oct.17 Theerthodbhava strictly follow COVID-19 norms. Suggesting that local people get preference for attending the event this time in the wake of COVID, she said that people from other districts and places can attend the month-long Jatra that will take place in the later days.
Bhagamandala-Talacauvery Temple Management Board President B.S. Thammaiah said that ‘Teertha Snana’ will not be allowed this time and only ‘Teertha Prokshane’ (sprinkling of holy water) will be there.
Noting that only a minimal number of priests will perform rituals around ‘Theertha Kundike’ by maintaining physical distancing among them, Thammaih said that a separate arrangement has been made for the devotees to collect holy water.
Clarifying that mass feeding (Annadana) will not be allowed, he said that ‘Pinda Pradhana’ will be allowed at Bhagamandala from 5 am on Oct. 17. He further said that transportation of holy water in vehicles has been banned this year and there will be no distribution of vehicle passes as well.
Dy.SP Dinesh Kumar, Madikeri Taluk Medical Officer Dr. Gopinath, Bhagamandala Temple’s Balladka Appaji, Talacauvery Temple’s Kodi Motaiah, Coffee Planters Co-operative Society President M.B. Devaiah, Tahsildar Mahesh and a host of other officials were present.