Muharram Processions Denied By Supreme Court Amid COVID-19

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Muharram Processions Denied By Supreme Court Amid COVID-19

Supreme Court refused to permit the Muharram processions in the country due to the coronavirus outbreak. The Supreme Court said that permitting Muharram processions will lead to chaos as one community will be targeted for spreading the coronavirus.

“If we allow this procession across the country there will be chaos and one particular community will be targeted for spreading the pandemic COVID-19,” Chief Justice SA Bobde said.

The petitioner cited the June order of the court which permitted the Odisha Rath Yatra festival. To the petitioner, the court replied that the Rath Yatra was set for one place with one route. The chief justice added that for one place the risk could be examined but for the whole country it is tough.

Justice Bobde said that the health risk of all people cannot be taken. He added that the risk could be evaluated if it was for one place.

Moreover, the petitioner asked the Supreme Court to give permission to have Muharram procession in Lucknow. He said that in the UP capital, a large number of Shia community resides.

For the above request, the Supreme Court directed the petitioner to seek permission from the Allahabad High Court. Apart from the Chief Justice, the bench consisted of Justices AS Bopanna and V. Ramasubramanian.

In late March, the country was put under lockdown to curb the spread of the coronavirus. During the lockdown all places of worship, religious processions and gatherings were banned.

In the month of June, the first major religious activity, the annual Jagannath Rath Yatra, was declined by the Supreme Court. The Supreme Court said that Lord Jagannath will not forgive them if they allowed the rath yatra. However, 5 days later, the court permitted the yatra to happen after an appeal made by the Centre.

Last week, the top court allowed Jains to offer prayers at any one of three temples in Mumbai as part of festivities surrounding the eight-day Paryushan festival. The top court said prayers could be offered as long as SOPs like the use of face masks and physical distancing were strictly enforced.

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