Tamil Nadu

Entry for devotees at Meenakshi Temple, only if vaccinated; Screening intensified at Rameswaram

A view of the Golden Lotus in Sri Meenakshi Sundareswarar Temple tank, in Madurai, Tamil Nadu

A view of the Golden Lotus in Sri Meenakshi Sundareswarar Temple tank, in Madurai, Tamil Nadu

Beginning Monday (December 13), entry for devotees and tourists into the world famous Sri Meenakshi Sundareswarar Temple in Madurai shall be permitted only if they had taken the vaccine dose for Covid-19, said Joint Commissioner (HR&CE) Chelladurai on Sunday.

The Tamil Nadu government had made it mandatory for people to get inoculated, especially, if they moved in public places. Be it any shrines, or shopping malls and among others, they should have the vaccine dosage administered as mandated by the Union government.

The Meenakshi Temple, which on an average, received around 30,000 to 45,000 devotees from various destinations, had laid out certain norms as per the government regulations. "This is to prevent the virus from spreading. The visitors shall hence possess a copy of their vaccine certificate," the HR&CE officials said.

Madurai poor in vaccine dose

Recently, TN Health Minister Ma Subramanian and Secretary (Health) J Radhakrishnan said Madurai was one among the few districts, which had low number of doses being inoculated to the eligible persons. According to them, while 70 % of the eligible people had taken the first dose, only 28 % had taken the second dose, which was lower, when compared with many other districts in TN.

Madurai District Collector S Aneesh Shekhar reviewed the situation and intensified the vaccination in rural blocks such as Alanganallur, Katchakatti and Melur from last week. "The objective is to administer the first dose to 80 % of the people and the second dose to 40 %," he said.


In Rameswaram, the Municipality officials have installed huge hoardings at vantage locations informing the visitors and devotees to get inoculated. "Only those with vaccine doses taken, shall be permitted. The health department has kept the vials ready and people were given the shots on the spot," they added.

On an average, around 50,000 people visited the coastal town where the famous Sri Ramanathaswamy Temple was located. Apart from this, there were a number of beaches too in the district and the famous dargah at Yerwadi. With the Ayyappa devotees preparing for the pilgrimage, those from Kerala and other States were thoroughly screened even if they had taken the mandated double dose of vaccine, officials said.

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Printable version | May 18, 2022 8:05:34 am | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/entry-for-devotees-at-meenakshi-temple-only-if-vaccinated-screening-intensified-at-rameswaram/article37938663.ece