The famous Lord Venkateswara Shrine in Tirumala and all other major temples will be out of the reach of devotees, while shopping centers and cinemas will be closed in Andhra Pradesh until March 31 to control the spread of the coronavirus.
The restrictions will take effect from Friday, said Deputy Chief Minister of Medicine and Health AKK Srinivas (Nani), informing reporters here after a high-level meeting on COVID-19, Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy.
However, the daily rituals in all these temples will be performed by the priests. Only devotees will not be allowed, he said.
Report from Tirupati report said that all the roads, including the staircase, leading to Tirumala have been sealed since Thursday evening to prevent entry of pilgrims.
The devotees who have already reached the hills alone could go to the sanctuary until Friday morning, Tirumala Tirupati Devathanams executive officer, Anil Kumar Singhal told reporters.
He said it would be the first time in recent history that the temple would be closed to the devotees for more than a week.
Temples Closed for Devotees / COVID-19:
Tirupati Lord Venkateswara Temple
Vijayawada Kanaka Durga Temple
Sri Bhramaramba Mallikarjuna Temple or Srisailam Lord Shiva Temple
Annavaram Sri Satyanarayana Swamy Vari Temple
Kanipakam Sri Varasiddhi Vinayaka Swamy Temple
Likewise, the main places of worship of other religions would also be closed, said the deputy chief minister.