Belur Math, the global headquarters of Ramakrishna Math and Ramakrishna Mission, has decided to throw open its gates TO the devotees from June 15 after putting in place all safety measures required to contain the spread of COVID-19.
The gates of the sprawling premises of the Math set up by Swami Vivekananada at Belur near here was closed since the lockdown was announced in March by the Centre. The Math has devotees from across the globe.
The secretary of Belur Math Ramakrishna Math and Ramakrishna Mission, Swami Suvirananda said in a statement that as the easing down of lockdown measures announced by the Centre and the state did not indicate the threat caused by COVID-19 pandemic is over, the authorities thought it prudent to put in place all the measures required before opening the gates of the Math and all RKM centres in the country for the scores of devotees.
The statement was issued on June 1, the day religious places of worship were thrown open by the West Bengal government.
"We had to think about both aspects - the issue of public health and also the wish of our devotees for having a darshan of the shrines of Swami Vivekananda, Sri Sarada Maa and Ramakrishna Paramahansa. But we believe spirituality and scientific temperament must go hand in hand," he told reporters on Thursday.
"Therefore it is imperative for us to consult experts and put in place adequate arrangement and infrastructure" before opening the (Belur Math) gates," he said.
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The senior monk said the timing of the opening and closure of the shrine and all other details confirming the health protocol and guidelines will be announced before opening date.
The Math complex had become totally out of bound for visitors from March 24 when the lockdown was clamped. There was restricted entry to it since May 16.