GUWAHATI, April 9: Finally, Assam government has come up with a standard operation procedure (SOP) for celebration of the Rongali Bihu festival under the Epidemic Diseases Act, 1897 in the state, even as there is sudden surge of Covid-19 cases in the state.
“In view of the fresh spike in #Covid-19 cases across many states, Assam has geared up its Covid management strategies and taking up need-based steps to contain the spread of the disease. Please see attached #Covid SOP for #Bihu& other festivals & adhere to these,” state health minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said in a tweet.
According to the notification, the event organisers have to seek permission from the district administration of the concerned district for organising any event resulting in a public gathering, mentioning the number of people likely to gather at the proposed event and the maximum capacity of the place/site where the event is proposed to be held.
“This will enable district administration to extend all possible support to the event organisers for a successful and safe celebration of the event,” the SOP said.
“The programme festival/ event has to be concluded by 11 pm mandatorily,” the notification stated.
All the organisers and volunteers involved in the organisation of functions and festivals must test themselves for Covid-19 three days prior to and after the event mandatorily, the notification said.
The event spot/site should be spacious and must be kept open from all sides. The event area must have adequate space for the arrangement of physical distancing (as per Covid-19 protocol), the notification said.
There should be multiple entry and exit gates and must be separate. The organisers must take measures to avoid crowding at all costs.
Each and every participant should be screened for fever using thermal scanners by the volunteers and anyone having a higher temperature may be advised to report to the nearest health facility for testing and should not be allowed to enter the event area, the notification also said.
The sitting arrangements should be made in such a way that social distancing is maintained between the chairs. In the case of fixed chairs, alternate seats may be considered. The organisers must engage volunteers at different points inside the event area to help out visitors, it also said.
The notification makes proper usage of masks for visitors/organisers, provision of hand sanitizer at the entry gate and even in the nearby area including the parking area and sanitizing of the event area twice daily as a strict public health measure mandatory.
It also emphasised on Print, Electronic and Social Media to maintain Covid protocol: “The use of print, electronic and social media must be optimally done to generate mass awareness about the Covid-19 protocols for organising the event. Organising committee members must put up posters and signage in the event area for encouraging people to get vaccinated and for following Covid appropriate behaviour,” it added.