AGENCIES, New Delhi: With the fasting month of Ramzan approaching in the third week of this month, minority affairs minister Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi on Monday as asked Muslims to strictly follow social distancing and lockdown guidelines in the wake of the COVID-19 outbreak. Naqvi urged them to offer prayers and perform other religious rituals like the “iftar (breaking of fast) staying inside their homes during the month of Ramzan, which will begin from April 24 or April 25.
Naqvi also held meetings with various religious leaders, representatives of social and religious organisations, officials and other office-bearers of state waqf boards,in this regard at the ministry on Monday. Naqvi, who is also the chairman of the Central Waqf Council, said more than seven lakh registered mosques, eidgahs, imambadas, dargahs and other religious institutions come under the state waqf boards across the country.
Saudi Arabia has said that no mass gathering will be allowed during Ramadan (Ramzan) at religious places.
The state waqf boards, through the Central Waqf Council, have been directed to ensure that the people do not gather at religious and other places under any circumstances during Ramzan, Naqvi said.
All the religious activities at temples, mosques, gurdwaras, churches and other religious places in the country have been cancelled in view of the COVID-19 pandemic, he said. Guidelines of lockdown and social distancing are being followed effectively, he said.
Naqvi said the entire country is seriously and honestly following lockdown and social distancing guidelines on the appeal of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. “Any type of carelessness can be harmful for us, our family, the society and the entire country. We should follow the guidelines of the administration to defeat coronavirus with all seriousness and honesty,” he asserted.