New Delhi, July 10 -- The Rath Yatra festival in Odisha's Puri this year will be celebrated without the participation of devotees, similar to the previous year, along with strict adherence to coronavirus disease protocols (Covid-19) in order to curb the spread of the viral disease, the Jagannath temple administration said on Friday.

Rath Yatra, an annual festival associated with Lord Jagannath, is held for centuries in Puri in July. The Odisha government announced in June that the Yatra this year will begin on July 12.

"No devotees are allowed to participate in Rath Yatra. Chariot pullers with negative RT-PCR test reports and those who have been fully vaccinated will be permitted to attend the Yatra. Around 1,000 officials excluding pol...