Places of worship, outside of containment areas, are expected to open from June 8 as India takes small steps towards unlocking after more than two months of lockdwon. In a detailed memo for places of worship, the Department of Health and Family Welfare said all of these places will guarantee social distancing protocol and face masks will be mandatory for access. SOPs have been established to prevent the spread of coronavirus infections.
Here are the guidelines that worshipers and religious institutions should remember
Who are advised not to visit religious institutions such as temples, mosques, gurudwaras and churches
1. Person over 65
2. Children under 10 years old
3. Pregnant women
4. People with comorbidity
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Back for the faithful
1. Maintain distance: individuals should maintain a minimum distance of 6 feet in public places whenever possible
2. Face masks: the use of face covers or masks will be compulsory
3. Wash your hands frequently with soap, even when they are not visibly dirty.
4. Use alcohol-based hand sanitizers
5. Respiratory Etiquette: Cover your mouth and nose when coughing and sneezing with a tissue / handkerchief / flexed elbow. Dispose of used tissues properly.
6. Individuals are advised to use the Aarogya Setu app
7. Bring your own prayer mat, if possible.
Don’ts for worshipers
1. It is strictly forbidden to spit
2. Touching idols, holy books will be prohibited
3. Entry without a mask will be prohibited
4. In the event that a person has a fever, they may not be allowed to enter the premises.
5. Avoid physical greetings
6. Do not take prasad
Back for religious places
1. It is mandatory for all religious institutions to place hand sanitizer and heat shields at the entrance
Only asymptomatic people should be admitted to the premises.
3. Only those with masks / blankets should be allowed to enter the premises.
4. Staggering visitors to do, if possible.
5. Shoes must be removed inside the vehicle. If necessary, they should be kept in separate locations for each individual / family by the individuals themselves.
6. Establishments must ensure separate entry and exit for visitors.
7. Ensure social distancing
8. The room temperature setting of all air conditioning units should be 24-30 degrees C, relative humidity should be 40-70%, the supply of fresh air should be as large as possible. and cross ventilation must be adequate.
9. Use devotional music recorded during the service whenever possible.
10. Community kitchens / langars / “Ann-daan”, etc. in religious places should adhere to physical distancing standards when preparing and distributing food.
11. Frequent cleaning and disinfection should be maintained
MoHFW Guidelines for Religious Institutions: Don’ts
1. Touching idols, holy books will be prohibited
2. Large gatherings / congregation prohibited
3. Avoid physical greetings
4. Do not give prasad
5. Avoid choirs, group singing
6. Avoid common prayer rugs
7. No sprinkling of holy water inside the religious place
Important guidelines – in the event of a suspected / confirmed case of Covid at the premises
1. Place the sick person in a room or place where they are isolated from others.
2. Immediately notify the nearest medical center (hospital / clinic) or call
state or district helpline.
3. A risk assessment will be undertaken by the designated public health service.
the competent authority (district RRT / attending physician) and, accordingly, other measures
insider regarding the management of the case, his contacts and the need to
4. Disinfection of the premises to be taken over if the person is declared positive.