Covid-19 at Maha Kumbh Mela: Top seer dies, Niranjani Akhada announces exit—Highlights | India News - Times of India

NEW DELHI: In the wake of the increasing number of Covid-19 cases in the sadhu community in Maha Kumbh and top seers dying of Covid-19 complications , akhadas have started exiting the grand pilgrimage that has so far hosted lakhs of people.
The Kumbh mela will end on April 30 officially and the next royal bath is on April 27. The Akhada Parishad, the apex body of all 13 akhadas, is planning to take part in the next royal bath but only a few saints will go for the dip.
Here are the highlights:
* Mahamandaleshwar Kapil Dev Das, 65, of the Nirwani akhada of MP, one of the 13 main akhadas, died from Covid-19 complications at a private facility in Haridwar on Thursday at the Maha Kumbh area.
* The place in Kankhal where the seer Dev Das had been camping houses 10,000 more saints and followers. Samples of all those staying there are scheduled to be collected on Friday.
* Niranjani Akhada, one of the largest naga sanyasi akhadas and the second most powerful after the Juna akhada, has announced it will exit the meal on April 17.
* Secretary of the Niranjani Akhada Mahant Ravindra Puri said that “most of the saints and their followers” in the camps at Haridwar have Covid-19 like symptoms.
* Karnataka has made the Covid test mandatory for all Kumbh pilgrims returning to the state. The returnees have also been advised to resume normal activities only after their Covid test report result is negative.
* Thirty-three policemen on their way back from Kumbh (between January and April 15) also tested positive. Many of them had reportedly taken both doses of the coronavirus vaccine.
* A senior official in the health department confirmed to TOI on Thursday that a total of 68 “top seers” in Haridwar have tested positive for Covid-19 between April 5 and 14.
* According to the mela administration, 332 people (of 14,915 tested) reported Covid positive on Thursday.
* The administration doesn’t have any record of the total number of Covid deaths among those attending the religious fair.
* Of the 13,415 tested on Wednesday, 119 were positive; 79,301 people were tested since April 12 and 745 found positive.

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