As the holy month of Ramadan is approaching, the government has issued standard operating procedures (SOPs) for people to spend Ramadan safely.
These SOPs were devised during the meeting of Prime Minister Imran Khan, President Arif Alvi, and ulema for arranging special prayers in Ramadan.
SOPs for Group Prayers & Taraweeh
First and foremost, people intending to offer prayers at the mosque have been strictly advised to perform ablution at home and wear a face mask. Physical distancing has been made mandatory, and people have been asked to keep a six-feet (2 meters) distance between two rows and at least 1 meter (3 feet) between people at all times.
As per the World Health Organization, the coronavirus can also be transmitted through respiratory droplets, and contact with a contaminated surface. Therefore, the use of carpets has been prohibited in mosques, rather, prayers will be performed on a bare surface cleaned/mopped with chlorine water or any disinfectant.
As per SOPs, Taraweeh congregations must not be conducted on roads, footpaths, and anywhere else other than mosques. People must maintain social distancing and avoid handshakes or any type of body contact.
About Iftar & I’tikaf
Moreover, there will be a complete ban on Iftar gatherings (at mosques or anywhere else), group i’tikaf, and other religious gatherings. People over 50 years of age and children will not be allowed to enter mosques.
The guidelines clearly mention that every mosque administration will be responsible for the complete implementation of these instructions and precautionary measures. Mosques violating these procedures will be sealed off.
Pakistan Ulema Council (PUC) has also agreed to adhere to the government guidelines. Religious leaders have asked people to strictly follow instructions as violations may lead to the closure of mosques.