NATION

Hindu Devotees Stick To Government Ban And Pray From Home, Mandir In Small Numbers

Many Hindus in the country have started their Ram Naumi prayers at home because the temples have been ordered to stay closed during this pandemic crisis.
26 Mar 2020 17:39
Hindu Devotees Stick To Government Ban And Pray From Home, Mandir In Small Numbers
Laxmi Narayan Mandir head priest Jayendra Kumar Sashtri conducting Ram Naumi prayer rituals on March 25, 2020. Photo: Shreeya Verma

Hindu communities have taken into consideration the ban on congregations of more than 20 people, as directed by the Fijian Government to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Many Hindus in the country have started their Ram Naumi prayers at home because the temples have been ordered to stay closed during this pandemic crisis.
Lautoka

In Lautoka, the Barara Temple caretaker said devotees had chosen to strictly adhere to a directive given by the Sanatan Dharm Sabha.

“We had a meeting just a few days ago and it was agreed among members that the best thing to do is listen to the government’s advice for the safety of our members as well,” he said.

Mr Pillay said he was not sure if other temples in the Lautoka area would follow the advisory.

However, members of the Barara, Lautoka temple had mutually agreed to cancel the Ram Navami celebration. Ram Naumi is celebrated for nine days, which starts today.
Suva

In Suva, Roshni Kumari, 42, of Vatuwaqa said the ban on mass gatherings was something new for her but they will abide by it.

She backs the ban on mass gatherings adding that it is necessary to prevent the virus from spreading.

She is hopeful that the pandemic will come to an end soon so that the entire world can function normally again.

Laxmi Narayan Temple in Suva priest, Jayendra Kumar Sashtri said: “We would cut down on Ramayan chanting but will carry on with the prayer for nine days from 7 to 8.30 pm,” he said.

“People have two options. Priests can organise the prayer ceremony at their temples with a maximum of four to five people or people can just stay home and pray with their family,” he said.

“It does not mean that it is important to celebrate Ram Naumi or any other festival in the temple to receive God’s blessings, but this is the time we need to be wise and practice the right thing.”

Edited by Naisa Koroi

Feedbackshreeya.verma@fijisun.com.fj

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