16:59 GMT05 August 2020
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    New Delhi (Sputnik): With no vaccine for the coronavirus in sight, it appear that people in India have taken refuge in superstition to fight off the disease with their faith as COVID-19 positive cases hit a grim milestone, crossing the 250,000 mark in the country.

    Indians, mostly women, are performing rituals and worshipping the coronavirus as “Mother Corona” or “Corona Goddess” because they believe that this can put an end to the pandemic.

    The practice of worshipping the coronavirus as a goddess has been reported from states like Bihar, Jharkhand, and Assam.

    In a video from Bihar, the state where videos depicting the worship a Kangaroo-shaped dustbin as a god went viral in 2017, women wore vermilion on their forehead and chanted "long live corona ma" and "go away from Bihar" in a temple. They also offered flowers, sweets, and cloves to the "Corona Goddess".

    In the Biswanath district of northeastern Assam, women reportedly gathered at a river bank to perform rituals and pray to the “Corona goddess”, believing that the frightful disease will leave the world if satisfied with their devotions.

    In Jharkhand’s Dhanbad, transgender individuals gathered at an open ground on Friday to perform a special puja (ritual) to appease the "Coronavirus Goddess" after some of them claimed that the "goddess" had appeared in their dreams.

    The incidents, happening for 2-3 days, have led to mixed reactions on social media as some mocked them for their superstitious belief and others called them gullible and innocent.

    ​Some were also left concerned after religious places reopened in the country on Monday after an absolute shutdown for over 75 days. While the Ministry of Home Affairs has issued guidelines and protocols to be followed to ensure COVID-19-proof measure, temples, mosques, and shrines see huge crowds on any given day. 

    The decision to open malls and places of woship comes a day after the nation surpassed Italy and Spain in coronavirus infections, recording 256,611 positive cases and 7,135 deaths.

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    worship, superstition, prayer, superstitions, COVID-19, India
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