Overnight Durga Puja pandal-hopping is expected to start from today (October 19) amid warning by doctors that the number of Covid-19 cases could spike up to four times after the festive season, if restrictions are relaxed by the West Bengal government.

In a meeting with the puja committees on September 24, chief minister Mamata Banerjee said that the streets of Kolkata will not be deserted during puja. People can visit puja pandals in the evening from Tritiya to Ekadashi.

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While Tritiya falls today (October 19), Ekadashi will be observed on October 27.

However, most of the big pujas in Kolkata and its suburbs have been inaugurated by CM Banerjee herself.

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The festivities come amid West Bengal reporting a spike in the number of Covid-19 cases since people started shopping for the festive season and crowding around marketplaces.

On Sunday (October 18), 3,983 new Covid-19 cases were reported from across the state, including 813 in Kolkata alone. This is the maximum number of viral outbreak cases recorded in the state and the city on a single day.