My Expressions

Date : 25 October 2020

  • Young Voice
  • Hunar Kaur

Dussehra is celebrated throughout the country with pomp and splendor. Vijayadashami also is known as Dussehra, Dasara or Dashain is a major Hindu festival celebrated at the end of Navaratri every year. It is observed on the tenth day in the Hindu calendar month of Ashvin or Kartik, the sixth and seventh month of the Hindu Luni-Solar Calendar respectively, which typically falls in the Gregorian months of September and October

Vijayadashami is observed for different reasons and celebrated differently in various parts of the Indian subcontinent. In the southern, eastern, northeastern, and some northern states of India, Vijayadashami marks the end of Durga Puja, remembering goddess Durga’s victory over the buffalo demon Mahishasura to restore and protect dharma.

In the northern, central, and western states, the festival is synonymously called Dussehra (also spelled Dasara, Dashahara). In these regions, it marks the end of “Ramlila” and remembers God Rama’s victory over the Ravan.

Taking all the necessary precautions against novel coronavirus while we engage in festivities is crucial to avoid health complications as the season changes. Festival season, winter conditions, increased pollution, and reopening of work and entertainment spaces can serve as a deadly combination that can make more and more people vulnerable to severe COVID-19. Experts have already warned of a possible second wave of coronavirus if we don’t stick to standard protocols while we are at celebrations.

State governments have released norms to be followed during the upcoming festivities. Celebrations have gone virtual in some pandals, while in others, gatherings are strictly prohibited to smaller numbers. Knowing precautions is not enough, we have to keep reminding ourselves and strictly follow them to get results.

Here are some measures you can take to ensure safety during the festival celebrations:

  1. Follow SOPs. Do not ever forget your mask at home while visiting pandals and other places of celebration. Carry a sanitizer all the
    time, wash your hands at regular intervals, and practice complete social distancing.
  2. Avoid fasting if you fall under COVID-19 high-risk group. Experts have warned pregnant women, people recovering from COVID-19
    infection, elderly people with comorbidities to avoid fasting during this festive season to safeguard their health.
  3. Virtual pandals and virtual celebrations are the new norms. Many places are offering virtual darshan to people and you can choose to be
    a part of it.
  4. Check yourself for the slightest of symptoms before you step out of the house so that you do not put other people at risk.
  5. Avoid physical contact with people and keep a 6 feet distance from each other. Avoid touching idols and other things. Avoid gatherings
    and mingling with the crowd.
  6. Avoid eating food from outside.
  7. Keep your celebration outside short and come to your home as quickly as possible.
  8. Festive events are strictly prohibited in the containment zones. If your home falls under a containment zone, do not step outside to celebrate.

The pandemic, however, has not crushed the creativity of people. People have come up with unique ways to keep up the spirit of the festivities amidst COVID-19. Dussehra signifies the victory of good over evil. Celebrating the festival season with utmost safety must be our utmost priority, to ensure that we keep COVID-19 in check, and together win the battle against novel coronavirus.

 

Hunar Kaur

9, DPS, Sonepat, Haryana

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