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Huge gatherings at an Indian Hindu festival as the virus intensifies

NEW DELHI (AP) – Tens of thousands of Hindu devotees gathered in the Ganges on Monday for special prayers, many of them distorting the practice of social exclusion as the coronavirus was spreading at a record speed in India.

The Kumbh Mela or Pitcher Festival is one of the holiest pilgrimages of Hinduism. The faithful congregation gathers in the northern city of Haridwar. Pilgrims are immersed in the waters of the Ganges, which, in their opinion, will free them from their sins, free them from the period of their birth or death.

Kumbh Mela passes in April և India’s epidemic deterioration, averaging over 130,000 cases per day for seven days. Hospitals are overcrowded, և specialists worry that the worst is yet to come.

Critics of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Hindu-nationalist Baharatiya Ata Anata party say the festival was allowed at a time when the coronavirus is on the rise because the government was unwilling to anger the Hindus, the party’s biggest supporters.

They compare it to last year’s response when Indian Muslims faced a rise in Islamophobia following allegations that the initial rise in infections was linked to a three-day meeting of the Tablighi Jamaat, an Islamic missionary group in New Delhi.

Some leaders of Modi ազատ ազատ ազատ ազատ որոշ որոշ որոշ որոշ որոշ որոշ որոշ որոշ որոշ որոշ որոշ որոշ որոշ որոշ որոշ որոշ որոշ որոշ որոշ որոշ որոշ որոշ որոշ որոշ որոշ որոշ որոշ որոշ որոշ որոշ որոշ որոշ որոշ որոշ որոշ որոշ որոշ որոշ որոշ որոշ 200 pieces daily. Sin has sparked a wave of violence, business boycotts and hate speech against Muslims.

India’s 200 million Muslims make up 14% of the population, the largest minority group in the Hindu-majority country.

More recently, the government has also been instrumental in holding massive election rallies in which masked men shook key social distance protocols.

In recent days, India has confirmed the number of infections caused by the explosion in Brazil as the second worst affected country. The western state of Maharashtra, where the financial capital of Mumbai is located, has registered almost half of the country’s new infections in the last two weeks.

The northern province of Uttar Pradesh, where the pilgrimage town of Haridwar resides, reports 7,323 cases of coronavirus infection, from COVID-19 to 1,760 deaths.

Amid concerns, the festival could turn into a pervasive event, with State Minister Tirat Singh Rawat saying last week that “faith in God will overcome the fear of the virus.”

Authorities in Haridvar say the festival has been reduced in size over the past year, but huge gatherings have made it difficult to hold social events. Coronavirus tests are mandatory for anyone entering the area.

“We are constantly appealing to people to follow COVID-19 compliance. But because of the huge crowd, it is practically impossible, “said Sanjay Gunjyal, a senior police officer.

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