Ganesh Chaturthi 2021 is almost here and the beautiful Ganesha idols are being decorated ahead of the festival as devotees plan to celebrate the 10-day extravaganza with fervour. Like last year, processions or gatherings are being discouraged due to fear of rise in cases.
However, one must not lose heart and try to enjoy the festivities by avoiding crowds, following social distancing guidelines and being careful.
While experts are advising people that staying at home is the best and safest option, after months of isolation and pandemic fatigue, one may want to be with their family and meet up with friends.
“But the reality remains that large parties or gatherings, traveling to see friends and family, and brushing off masks and social distancing can have serious consequences – the impact of which will be felt beyond your own circle. There is no need to celebrate festivals by gathering in a crowd; the festivities can be scaled down too,” says Dr. Sandeep Patil, Chief Intensivist and Dr. Sudhir Gore, Head-Emergency Medicine, Fortis Hospital, Kalyan in a statement.
Guidelines for small celebration at home
Make your event as safe as possible for guests; ventilate the rooms appropriately or host the event in the terrace or bacony to enable natural ventilation
Keep the gathering small and short
Encourage people to wear masks and ensure enough space for each guest to maintain at least a 1-meter distance from others
Help your guests follow Covid-19 appropriate measures. Provide masks, alcohol-based hand sanitizer or access to soap and water, tissues and bins with lids that close
Follow guidance issued by local public health authorities before you plan a gathering
Here’s what you need to do when stepping out
*All crowded places should be avoided. Festivals should be celebrated with all precautions
*Meet people in open areas and maintain required distancing
*Wearing a mask is a must once you step out of the house
*Six feet or two meters of social distancing is compulsory
*Sanitize your hands frequently (for at least 20 seconds)
*Go out with only your social bubble
*Spitting is strictly prohibited
*Even if you get stuck in a crowd by chance, make sure you are wearing a mask and avoiding face-to-face contact
*Wash your clothes with detergent after coming back home and also take a hot water bath
*Experts suggest that those with respiratory complaints or a weakened immune system must refrain from venturing out at any cost
*Consult a doctor without delay if you notice any symptoms after returning home
Best way to celebrate Ganesh Chaturthi given the circumstances
As a family be there for each other. Try to have conversations with family and friends. Maybe a virtual call or small gathering while maintaining social distancing can be done.
*You can even send gifts to your loved ones.
*Be aware of overindulging: Regardless of whether we can have large celebrations or not, it’s important to keep an eye on what you’re drinking and eating.
*Celebrating with children: This may be a time your children usually get together with cousins or their friends. You could try to keep them connected through video calls, so they feel included. Spend more time with them, cook for them, and indulge in some fun activities with them.
*Maintain traditions: You could try to stick to the traditions that you have in place. Whether it’s making a particular meal, or decorating your home on a certain day. By maintaining these traditions you can create a sense of normalcy.
(With inputs from Dr. Sandeep Patil, Chief Intensivist and Dr. Sudhir Gore, Head-Emergency Medicine, Fortis Hospital, Kalyan)