Coronavirus pandemic: Lalon death anniversary programme postponed


All kinds of programmes on the occasion of 130th death anniversary of Baul king Fakir Lalon Shah this year have been postponed due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

Aslam Hossain, deputy commissioner of Kushtia, made the announcement yesterday evening as Lalon followers started gathering at the shrine of Lalon Shah at Chheuria in Kushtia in the evening on the occasion of the day.

The decision came as around four to five lakh people usually gather at Lalon’s shrine over the event and it can spread coronavirus infections, said Aslam Hossain, also president of Lalon Academy.

All the entrances to Lalon’s shrine have been locked, said our Kushtia correspondent quoting the DC.

However, the local administration allowed some followers of Lalon to perform few rituals inside the shrine but they were asked to maintain the health guideline rules of Covid-19.

According to the Baul religion, some Bauls performed worship on the night of first Kartik (last night), the date on which Lalon died, in a limited manner.

Earlier, on October 4, in a meeting, Lalon Academy — the governing body of Lalon shrine — decided not to hold any function this year due to fear of transmission of coronavirus.

Every year, a three-day Baul Mela, discussion meeting and Baul song performance were organised on this day with the help of the Ministry of Cultural Affairs.

Selim Haque, a member of the convening committee of Lalon Academy, said it was an official decision and all gates of shrine were kept closed.

According to the Lalon Academy, the shrine remained closed since March 25 due to the coronavirus pandemic. No one was allowed to enter the shrine except for the daily religious rites and special occasions.

According to the customs of the day, the shrine was washed and cleaned on Pahela Kartik. Bauls, Baul researchers, followers, devotees and visitors come from home and abroad.

This year, no one from outside was allowed to enter the shrine, added our correspondent.

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