Puri: Many devotees were denied access to Srimandir as they could not arrange protective face masks Tuesday.
In the wake of the coronavirus scare, the Shree Jagannath Temple Administration (SJTA) had issued a set of restrictions for the temple staffers as well as the visiting devotees in a bid to keep the virus at bay.
Although the devotees could not have a glimpse of the deities, they welcomed the SJTA’s restrictions as it would help curb the spread of the virus.
On the first day of restriction—Monday, a few devotees who could not arrange face masks were allowed entry to the 12th century shrine as they used handkerchiefs and scarves to cover their face. However, devotees who tried entering the shrine without face masks were denied entry at the barricade, said a source.
Sources said many devotees returned empty-handed even after approaching several drugstores for masks in the Pilgrim City.
“Many shops said they have run out of the face masks as well as hand sanitisers due to surge in demand on one hand and poor supply on the other,” said one of the devotees who said to have approached at least seven medicine shops in Puri.