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Court seeks Sindh’s response over restricting Taraweeh prayers in mosques


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KARACHI, April 28 : The Sindh High Court has issued a notice to the Sindh government for not adhering to the federal government’s instruction regarding congregations in mosques.
The court has also summoned a reply from the Sindh chief secretary by May 7.
Before the beginning of Ramazan, the Centre and top Islamic clerics agreed on holding congregational Taraweeh prayers in mosques across the country. It was decided that Taraweeh would take place with a gap of at least two people between worshipers.
However, the Sindh government held a separate meeting with Ulemas in the province and agreed on suspending Taraweehs for Ramazan to stem the increasing coronavirus infections.
A petition was then filed against the provincial government’s move in the Sindh High Court which was heard on Tuesday.
The petition argued that the Sindh government is citing the 18th Amendment for not following the federal government’s order, therefore, the amendment should be nullified under Article 199 of the Constitution.
It said the authorities were stopping worshippers from entering mosques and thus, depriving them of their constitutional right.
“We don’t know what happens to the Sindh chief minister. He stands at night and says congregational Friday prayers will not be allowed in mosques. The police are booking worshippers under terrorism acts,” the petition stated.
Justice Muhammad Ali Mazhar reprimanded the Sindh government for “deviating” from the SOPs that were set by the president.
“Why are all mosques being closed? Shouldn’t only those mosques be shut where SOPs are not being followed?” the judge asked the additional advocate general.
The court, however, remarked that it is not authorized to nullify an amendment and that the lawmakers in the National Assembly should look into the matter.
The petition was then withdrawn.

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