Maharashtra: No processions on Muharram amid Covid pandemic
Muharram is observed by Muslims with abstinence and prayers to mourn the martyrdom of Hazrat Imam Hussain in the battle of Karbala in the seventh century.
In the wake of the Covid pandemic, the Maharashtra government on Monday ordered people to observe Muharram in a simple manner and without any procession to avoid crowding. This is the second consecutive year when no religious processions are allowed for any community in the state. The state also said that people living in one housing society are also not allowed to gather for mourning and they should mourn inside their homes.
Muharram is observed by Muslims with abstinence and prayers to mourn the martyrdom of Hazrat Imam Hussain in the battle of Karbala in the seventh century. It marks the first and one of the sacred months of the Islamic calendar. It will be observed on August 18 and 19.
“In line with the ban imposed on social and religious programmes by the Centre and the state government, the processions will not be allowed this year. People are expected to mourn inside their homes…,” states the circular.
The state has also prohibited taking out Tazia (a replica of the tomb of Imam Hussain) to observe Muharram. For setting up ‘Sabeels’ (stalls that provide free drinking water), permission should be obtained from the local administration and not more than two persons are allowed to be present there. Water should be distributed only in sealed bottles from ‘Sabeels’ and cleanliness along with Covid protocols should be observed.