The Delhi government should consider allowing worship at religious sites in the national capital while “respecting COVID-19 protocols” as the intensity of the pandemic “reduced significantly” in the city, former judge has ruled of Supreme Court Kurian Joseph (retired) said in a letter to Prime Minister Arvind Kejriwal.
“It is very encouraging and relieved to hear that the intensity of the COVID-19 pandemic in Delhi has decreased significantly…many activities such as restaurants, bars, theaters and auditoriums have been allowed to resume operations by 50 percent of the seating capacity … Weekly markets and spas are also allowed. The allowed number of people who can attend services such as funeral and wedding has been increased to 100. These are positive markers that indicate that society is returning to normal,” said Judge Joseph in the letter .
“The restriction in the order, ‘religious places are allowed, but no visitors are allowed’ still continues. As you may recall, before the second wave, restrictions had already been relaxed and services had resumed in places of public worship, with limited numbers and subject to other COVID-19 protocols. Restrictions were only reintroduced due to the second wave of the pandemic, which has now been noticeably thinned, and so easing has been allowed for many of the above activities,” he said. the retired Supreme Court judge.
“…The fact is that allowing people to attend religious worship and services would only help to relieve their deep stress and it would only give them positivity, hope, inner strength and confidence, which the I would also like to point out to you that, given the above factual background, the prohibition of services in public worship will be discriminatory and may amount to denial of the constitutional rights guaranteed by Articles 14, 19, 21 and 25,” Judge Joseph said. “Therefore, I kindly request that you investigate the matter immediately and allow worship and services at religious sites in Delhi, subject to COVID-19 protocols,” he said in the letter. .
On Thursday, the health ministry had said that India is still not out of the woods when it comes to the second wave of COVID-19 and that people should celebrate festivals such as Diwali, Eid, Navratri and Ganesh Chaturthi at home without gathering in large numbers. .
India on Thursday reported the largest one-day rise in COVID-19 cases in two months, amid concerns over the spread of the virus from worst-affected Kerala, the reopening of schools and the start of the festival season.
“Festivals like Ganesh Chaturthi, Navratri and Eid are coming up. Also this year, like last year, they will have to be celebrated in a restrictive way, and it is our call to everyone to stay at home”, Dr VK Paul, member of the government think tank NITI Aayog and head of the COVID-19 task force, had told reporters on Thursday.