Chhath, a four-day long festival of folk faith of the people of eastern Uttar Pradesh and Bihar, has started with a bath from Monday, but even now the political tension continues in Delhi over Chhath Puja. Amid the ongoing tussle between the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leaders, BJP MP from West Delhi Lok Sabha seat, Pravesh Verma, along with party workers and members of the ‘Purvanchali’ community, on Monday offered prayers at Yamuna Ghat near ITO. Started the preparations for Chhath Puja by performing rituals.
The Delhi Disaster Management Authority (DDMA), in its order on October 29, had allowed Chhath celebrations at “specified places” except along the banks of the Yamuna. DDMA has directed the administrative and police officers to ensure strict compliance of all its orders related to COVID.
Pravesh Verma alleged that Kejriwal has banned Chhath Puja at Yamuna Ghats which is unacceptable. He said yesterday that he would defy the ban on Chhath Puja on the banks of Yamuna and said that I will stay with Purvanchali brothers and sisters and we will start the worship by cleaning Chhath Ghat at ITO. I challenge Arvind Kejriwal to stop if he can.
The DDMA order also states that any violation of its guidelines is liable to prosecution as per legal provisions, including the Indian Penal Code and the Disaster Management Act, 2005.
The Delhi Disaster Management Authority (DDMA) has banned the celebration of Chhath Puja at Yamuna Ghats this year. There has been a verbal war between the AAP and the BJP regarding this for the past several days. Chhath festival also has political implications as people from Purvanchal (Eastern Uttar Pradesh and Bihar) live in large numbers in Delhi which is important for both the parties in terms of vote bank.
‘AAP’ leaders staged a sit-in in Dwarka
Significantly, the ongoing verbal war between the ruling Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) and the opposition BJP over the Chhath Puja festival at Yamuna Ghats in Delhi intensified on Sunday when BJP MP Parvesh Verma defied the ban. But threatened to perform Chhath Puja. At the same time, Verma had challenged Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and said that Kejriwal should stop him. Meanwhile, AAP MLAs Sanjeev Jha and Vinay Mishra staged a sit-in accusing the BJP of preventing them from preparing Chhath Ghat in Dwarka. AAP MLA from Burari Jha said that BJP is not allowing the people of Purvanchal to build Chhath Ghat to obstruct Chhath Puja. In response, AAP MLAs and volunteers have come forward to build Chhath Ghat in Dwarka.