Tuesday October 19, 2021

Govt issues Muharram guidelines to contain corona

August 12, 2021

LAHORE:The Home Department has issued guidelines for maintaining peace and order and containing spread of Covid-19 during Muharram.

At least one dose of vaccine has been made mandatory for a Zakir for conducting Majalis. Venues for holding Majalis should be open and spacious with proper ventilation arrangements. Maintaining six feet distance is mandatory. Wearing masks is mandatory for all individuals. Organising committees should ensure SOPs. Health desks must be established to check devotees before entering the Majlis venue.According to a notification available with The News, law and order in the backdrop of increased threat perception demands extraordinary vigilance and extensive security measures to stave off miscreants. Although security measures in Punjab have weakened terrorist command echelons, reducing their effectiveness, however, the forces inimical to the state may take advantage of the soft targets and carryout terrorist activities.

The letter said the situation demands adoption of foolproof security measures aimed at hardening the soft targets in remote areas. Entry and exit must be regulated to avoid overcrowding. Majalis would be discouraged if don’t follow SOPs. Tabaruk (charity foods) should be distributed in parcel.

Use of loudspeakers, wall chalking, hate material, hate speeches, display of weapons, aerial firing and processions routes/time would be dealt with as per law. Three-four tiers of security cover to be maintained for all categories of processions/Majalis under all circumstances. Multiple checking points shall be established to deter terrorists/ miscreants. Jammers would be deployed on the routes of procession. The notification said, the entry of outside firebrand speakers and known agitators be identified for gagging/banning. Districts are at liberty to decide cases on merit without involving the Home Department.

Furthermore, the activities of fanatic should be kept under constant watch. Anyone involved in sectarian violence should be dealt strictly in accordance with law. It is pertinent to mention here that persons placed on fourth schedule and activities of persons affiliated with banned organisations should be closely monitored. Additionally, all restrictions imposed upon the persons placed under fourth schedule should be implemented in true and spirit.