National Unity Ministry says it held Thaipusam SOP engagement session with stakeholders

National Unity Ministry says it held Thaipusam SOP engagement session with stakeholders

Devotees smash coconuts along Jalan Dato Keramat, George Town, as the silver chariot passes by, February 7, 2020. ― Picture by Sayuti Zainudin

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KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 8 — An engagement session regarding the standard operating procedure (SOP) for Thaipusam celebrations next month was held with stakeholders on December 2 to ensure safety and public health aspects are followed.

The National Unity Ministry (KPN) said in a statement today that 10 Hindu religious leaders from Selangor, Kuala Lumpur, Penang, Kedah, Perak, and Johor were invited to participate in an engagement session with representatives from the National Security Council (MKN) and the Health Ministry.

“Seven activities related to the Thaipusam celebrations, including temple prayers, Kavadi, Paal Koodam, hair shaving, ritual baths, the opening of stalls, and processions of devotees and the Silver Chariot were discussed during the session.

“The approval of suggested SOPs relating to the activities have not been finalised,” the statement read.

According to the statement, the suggested SOPs from the engagement session will be brought up for approval at three meetings, the Pandemic Management Technical Work Group meeting; the Quartet Ministers’ meeting; and the Special Committee on Pandemic Management meeting.

“The Thaipusam celebration SOP will be announced by KPN after obtaining approval from the committees,” the statement read.

Its minister, Datuk Halimah Mohamed Sadique said yesterday that all processions, including the Thaipusam kavadi procession, were not allowed due to the threat posed by the new Covid-9 variant. — Bernama

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