Prayers being held in a mosque in Pakistan with social distancing.
Prayers being held in a mosque in Pakistan with social distancing.

Mosques in Pakistan to remain open during Ramzan amid raging coronavirus pandemic

ANI | Updated: Apr 18, 2020 18:50 IST

Islamabad [Pakistan], April 18 (ANI): Pakistan decided on Saturday that mosques in the country would remain open during the holy month of Ramzan with certain conditions even as the nationwide tally of coronavirus cases has crossed 7, 500.
Pakistan President Arif Alvi said on Saturday that the mosques in the country would remain open during Ramzan but people would have to follow strict guidelines that the government would release in regard to prayers in mosques, The Express Tribune reported.
Alvi chaired a meeting of top religious scholars in the country on Saturday to arrive at the decision.
He said, "The entire nation is looking towards the government and the religious scholars to come up with a consensus policy on the matter."
Alvi added that he had consulted with other political leaders as well before arriving at such a decision. He had also consulted various provincial government leaders on the guidelines to be drafted for letting the prayers go on during the Ramzan period.

Alvi stressed that the government will have to project unity in order to help the country come out of the COVID-19 crisis.
Earlier, Minister for Religious Affairs Noorul Haq Qadri had said the decision regarding congregational prayers, tarawih and aitkaaf (seclusion) would be made in unison. On April 14, religious leaders had asked the Imran Khan-led government to lift restrictions on congregational prayers in mosques.
The holy month of Ramzan, that culminates with Eid-al-Fitr, is likely to begin from Friday, April 24, depending on the sighting of the moon.
As of Saturday, Pakistan has reported 7,516 cases of coronavirus in the country. A total of 3,410 cases in Punjab province, 2,217 in Sindh province, 1,077 in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa, 351 in Balochistan, 250 in Gilgit-Baltistan, 163 in Islamabad and 48 in Pakistan Occupied Kashmir (PoK).
The nationwide death toll in Pakistan due to COVID-19 stands at 143. (ANI)