On Friday, Mumbai BJP president Mangal Prabhat Lodha wrote to Maharashtra CM Uddhav Thackeray urging him to permit Chhath Puja celebrations in the state. While the Ministry of Home Affairs permitted the reopening of religious places in India from June 8 onwards, the Maharashtra government decided against implementing this relaxation owing to the rising number of COVID-19 cases in the state. This year, Chhath Puja will be observed on November 20 after the culmination of the Diwali festival.
In the letter, he mentioned that Chhath Puja celebrations are usually organised at places such as Juhu Chowpatty, Girgaum Chowpatty, Dadar Chowpatty, Malad's Aksa beach, Bhandup's Shivaji Lake and Borivali beach. However, he lamented that the state government continued to impose restrictions on the celebration of the festivals amid the COVID-19 crisis. Lodha requested the CM to immediately allow worshippers to enter religious places so that people are not inconvenienced. He also called upon the administration to frame an appropriate COVID-19 protocol for the Chhath Puja celebrations.
On Thursday, November 12, Maharashtra recorded 4496 novel coronavirus cases taking the state's COVID-19 tally to 17,36,369. At present, there are 84,627 active cases in the state. With 7,809 COVID-19 patients discharged in the day, the number of recovered soared to 16,05,064.
122 deaths- 21 from Vasai Virar, 19 from Mumbai, 17 from Nagpur, 13 from Pune, 7 from Satara, 5 from Thane, 4 from Chandrapur, three each from Beed, Jalna, Sangli, Nashik and Navi Mumbai, two each from Ulhasnagar, Mira Bhayandar, Pimpri Chinchwad, Solapur, Nanded, Akola, Yavatmal and Wardha and one each from Bhandara, Osmanabad, Latur, Ahmednagar and Bhiwandi were reported on Thursday.
Until now, a total of 45,682 persons in the state have died owing to COVID-19. So far, 96,64,275 samples have been tested for the novel coronavirus in labs operational across the state. While 8,11,035 persons are under home quarantine, 6,487 others have been admitted to institutional quarantine centres. The COVID-19 positivity rate, recovery rate, and fatality rate in Maharashtra stand at 17.97%, 92.44%, and 2.63% respectively.