Guwahati, Jun 4 (PTI) The Ambubachi Mela at Assam's famed Kamakhya Temple here has been cancelled for the second consecutive year due to the COVID situation but rituals associated with the four-day annual fair will be performed by the priests from June 22.
The event, during which temple doors are closed for four days due to the belief of the annual menstrual cycle of Goddess Kamakhya, attracts over 25 lakh devotees from across the globe who seek blessings of the presiding deity when the doors are opened on the fifth day.
The Shakti Peeth atop the Nilachal Hill shall remain closed for visitors till June 30 and a decision regarding its reopening will be taken in consultation with the Kamrup Metropolitan district administration, a statement issued by the Maa Kamakhya Devalaya said on Friday.
No devotee shall be allowed to enter or stay on the temple premises and no arrangement for their food and lodging shall be made, it said.
The decision was taken in view of a high number of coronavirus cases and deaths caused by the infection in the district. Priests of the temple have urged people to cooperate with the authorities of the Shakti Peeth in this regard.
The Ambubachi Mela is the most important religious event of the temple and also of the state's tourism calendar.
The Kamakhya Temple has been closed to the devotees since April 27 following a surge in COVID-19 cases in the state during the second wave of the pandemic.
The temple doors were shut to the public from March 20 last year following the coronavirus outbreak, before reopening on October 11 with strict safety guidelines in place. PTI DG ACD ACD