1 April 2020
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The Balochistan government has banned congregational prayers at mosques across the province for 12 days to avoid the spread of the coronavirus.

Not more than three or five people (all mosque staff) can offer congregational prayers at mosques. The general public will have to offer their prayers at home.

The notification of the ban was issued on Thursday night, the same day Sindh banned congregational prayers. There is a fear that more people will contract the coronavirus at Friday congregational prayers.

The Balochistan government imposed the ban under Section 2 of the West Pakistan Epidemic Disease Act, 1958 as an “immediate preventative and speedy remedy” to “ensure public safety, conserve lives and maintain peace and tranquility in Balochistan”.

The notification also mentioned that religious leaders and scholars had unanimously announced their support on government restrictions on congregational prayers for medical reasons.

The Sindh government prohibited all congregational prayers across the province from March 27 to April 5. Balochistan’s restriction will be in place till April 7.

As of Thursday night, Pakistan had reported 1,197 known cases of the coronavirus. The federal government has not banned congregational prayers at mosques.

Abdul Gh Lone