Mysore/Mysuru: Places of worship including Temples, Churches, Mosques, Gurudwaras and Jain Temples, eating joints like hotels and restaurants and the shopping malls opened in Mysuru this morning throwing life back to pre-lockdown days. Cinema halls, multiplexes, swimming pools, bars and gyms, schools and colleges among other things, will remain shut until further notice.
All places that have been permitted to open today are following rigorous protocols to prevent the spread of the virus. They have deployed additional safety precautions and are in the process of giving wide publicity to their customers. However, the response of people to Unlock 1.0 was lukewarm as not much crowd was witnessed at these places this morning. Stakeholders say that people are still cautious and it might take a couple of days for normalcy to return.
Hospitality services too resumed operations, a breather for hotels, resorts and holiday homes. While certain star category hotels in Mysuru did not open today, other hotels and restaurants were open but with precautions. Some hotels like the Brigade Group’s Grand Mercure saw people checking-in to rooms. It is to be seen how quickly the hospitality sector will be able to address the COVID-19 concerns and attract visitors and tourists.
Popular eating joints across the city too opened for business but with less crowd. There were only a few breakfast eaters at popular hotels where seating arrangements were made in such a way that social distancing is maintained. Some hotels have published posters that contain list of dos and don’ts for customers. Steady crowds were expected in the evenings after the people return from work, said hoteliers.
Places of worship
Among the places of worship that opened today were the Sri Chamundeshwari Temple atop the Chamundi Hill, Tripurasundari Jwalamukhi Temple at Uthanahalli, Sri Lakshmivenkataramanaswamy Temple at Vontikoppal, all temples inside Mysore Palace premises including the Trinayaneshwara Swamy Temple, Panchamukhi Anjaneyaswamy Temple on Irwin Road, 101 Ganapathy Temple at Agrahara, Amrutheshwara Temple on Dewans Road, Eshwara Temple on Ramanuja Road and Chandramouleshwara Temple at Mathru Mandali Circle were open.
Checking of body temperature at the entrance with infrared thermometers, use of hand sanitisers, wearing of masks by devotees and staff and also maintaining social distancing were common sights everywhere.
Only ‘darshan’ was allowed at Temples and there were no distribution of Theertha Prasadam or Dasoha (free food). Even the Srikantenswaraswamy Temple at Nanjangud, Sriranganathaswamy Temple in Srirangapatna and the Nimishamba Temple were open.
Though the Government has ordered the tourist places to open, the Krishna Raja Sagar Dam remained shut today and according to Cauvery Neeravari Nigam Limited that manages the Dam, it will take at least 15 days for the Dam to open for tourists.
Own prayer mats
Most of the prominent Mosques including Eidgah Masjid, Kutchi Memon Masjid, Ya Allah Masjid, Umar Khayyam Masjid, Al-badr-Masjid, Quba Masjid, Nimrah Masjid, Masjid E Azam, Masjid-E-Noor, Masjid Ul Muslimeen, Kaif Masjid and Aqsa Masjid opened for prayers this morning. A lot of precautions were taken including social distancing and sanitising.
Awareness posters were put up at a few Masjids. At Mosques too, there were limited number of people to offer prayers and as per the instructions issued by the Mosque Management Committees, devotees had to bring their own prayer mats.
Chamaraja Constituency former MLA Vasu and leaders including former Corporator and member of Karnataka Haj Committee Suhail Baig and Sir Khazi of Mysuru Hazrath Moulana Mohammed Usman Shariff distributed thermal screening machines to all Mosques and Temples in Chamaraja Constituency today. Devaraja Block President Sundar Kumar, Akbar, Naushad, Rahmathulla, Tipu, Syed and others were present.
Regarding Churches too, less crowd were witnessed today as it is a working day. Even the famed St. Philomena’s Church sported a deserted look despite opening today.
Though hotels and restaurants opened for dining, the number of customers remained scarce in parts of the city. Only takeaways were allowed at hotels and restaurants all these days. Shopping malls including B.M. Habitat Mall, Garuda Mall, Forum City Centre and Mall of Mysore were opened after thorough sanitisation. But only a handful of customers, mainly ladies and youngsters, were seen shopping in the morning.