The Varaha Lakshmi Narasimha Swamy Temple at Simhachalam, in Vizag, shut down for devotees from Friday amid the coronavirus outbreak. The decision was taken at a meeting of the Trust Board under the chairmanship of Sanchaita Gajapati Raju.
As per reports, the darshan at the holy shrine has been halted for devotees until further orders. However, the daily rituals, sevas, and pujas to the deity at Simhachalam temple will be conducted as usual by the priests, while ensuring precautionary measures.
The State Government in Andhra Pradesh announced for the shutdown of educational institutions, cinema halls, shopping malls, gyms, parks, and other places of mass gathering to prevent coronavirus from spreading. The authorities even called for the cancelation of public meetings, rallies, and protests. Restaurants and bars, on the other hand, have been asked to maintain a distance of at least one metre between tables to minimise the risk. In the wake of the pandemic, the Tirumala Tirupati temple of Lord Venkateswara also shut down for devotees.
On Thursday night, Vizag reported its first positive case of coronavirus. A man, who had returned from Saudi Arabia on 12 March, tested positive for the virus. He is currently being treated at Chest hospital in the city. The number of coronavirus cases in Andhra Pradesh currently stands at three, including two cases in Nellore and Ongole.