In India, the city of Haridwar is one of the seven sacred cities of Hinduism. January 14 marks the start of the Kumbh Mela pilgrimage, for which more than a million people from all over the country are expected. While it was still dark, hundreds of worshipers were already gathered, some taking a bath in the waters of the Ganges to purify themselves. The pilgrimage lasts seven weeks.
The fears of a third wave are real. Despite the messages broadcast over loudspeakers, prevention is not always the watchword for the faithful, who are often very close to each other and without a mask. “God will take care of the fears of the pandemic. Humans do their homework and God does his“, reacts one of them. India already deplores 150,000 deaths from the coronavirus, and the authorities aim to vaccinate the entire population, that is to say 1.3 billion people.