MUMBAI: Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar on Wednesday said Muslims should offer namaz during Ramzan from their homes and not in mosques or any other public place in view of the COVID-19 threat.
The current lockdown, imposed to contain the spread of the deadly coronavirus, will be in force till May 3.
Extending greetings to Muslims on the occasion of Ramzan, which begins later this week, Pawar said, "Muslim brothers should offer namaz, Taraweeh (additional ritual prayers) and breakfast with Iftar staying inside their homes and not in mosques or any other public place."
In a statement, the senior NCP leader exuded confidence that the unity of countrymen will help register victory in the fight against coronavirus.
Muslims have observed discipline during the lockdown period, the state finance minister said, adding they should continue doing so during the month of Ramzan too.
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Pawar also expressed concern over reports of doctors, nurses, other paramedical staff, policemen, government employees and journalists getting infected by the coronavirus and urged them to take care of their health while discharging their duty.
Referring to the rise in the number of COVID-19 cases in Maharashtra, Pawar said it is unfortunate that some people are yet to understand the seriousness of the situation.
"The virus is spreading as some citizens are coming out on the streets. People should remain inside their homes," he said.