New Delhi/Mumbai : With Muslims planning to celebrate Eid and the question of offering prayers at mosques looming amid coronavirus scare, Maharashtra Minority Affairs Minister Nawab Malik said that community members themselves restrained from offering congregational prayers.
Malik told IANS: "People have restrained themselves in Shab-e-Barat and Shab-e-Qadr and now similar thing has been decided on Eid -- only a limited number of people will offer prayers at mosques and eidgahs and the rest can pray at home."
"The people have themselves decided and there is no pressure from the government as such. The religious leaders have told the community members how to offer prayers at home. So, 4 to 5 people can offer prayers at mosque or eidgah and then people can pray at home."
Maharashtra has largest coronavirus cases in the country and any congregation could be counterproductive so the government has already taken consent and confidence of the community leaders in the state.
Maulana Ashraf Imam of Malwani in Mumbai, who leads the Shia sect, said that since the prohibitory orders remain in force, notice on the prohibition of congregational prayers has been put outside the mosque since March when even the lockdown wasn't announced. "We are suspending congregational prayers; there is a SOP from the government which we are following."
Eid is slated to be celebrated on Monday across the country since the moon was not sighted on Saturday.