MUSCAT: The Supreme Committee tasked with tackling developments resulting from coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic held a meeting at the Interior Ministry on Tuesday under the chairmanship of Sayyid Hamoud bin Faisal al Busaidy, Minister of Interior.
The Committee followed up local and international developments on the pandemic, measures to curb its spread and its impacts.
After elaborate consultations and studying the proposals made by the Ministry of Awqaf and Religious Affairs, the committee decided to allow the opening of mosques whose capacity is not less than 400 worshippers (spacious mosques) from Sunday (November 15, 2020), on condition that only the five daily prayers are performed, with the exemption of Friday prayers.
The conditions for performing prayers at mosques also include the following. A worshipper should avoid going to the mosque if he feels any symptoms of COVID-19 infection or if such symptoms are experienced by one of his family members or people who have mingled with infected persons.
Mosques have to be opened at Call-for-Prayer Time (Adhan) and remain open only for 25 minutes, inclusive of Adhan, prayer and leaving the mosque.
Holy Quran books (Masahif) are to be kept away and not to be used by worshippers. Water coolers (fridges) have to be shut down. All toilets have to be closed totally.
Worshippers have to bring their own prayer mats.
Worshippers have to sanitise their hands before coming to the mosque and before leaving it. Worshippers have to wear face masks all the time when they are inside the mosque. Worshippers have to observe a distance of not less than 1.5 metres.
People responsible for mosque management have to see to it that all worshippers’ adhere to the measures mentioned above and other precautionary measures listed in the “Instructional Guide and Procedures for Mosque Preparation and Equipment” issued by the Ministry of Awqaf and Religious Affairs, without prejudice to the above-mentioned procedures.
The Supreme Committee prayed to the Almighty Allah to protect all people against all harm. — ONA