Federal govt. announces two holidays to mark Youm-e-Ashura
The federal government has on Friday announced two holidays for the upcoming Youm-e-Ashura, a major religious observance of the martyrdom at Karbala of Hazrat Hussein, a grandson of the Prophet Muhammad.
The notification from the Interior Ministry said that the government has declared August 18 and 19 as public holidays to mark Youm-e-Ashura.
Earlier this week, the Central Ruet-e-Hilal Committee sighted the Muharram-ul-Haram moon, which rings in the new Islamic year, 1443 AH.
Youm-e-Ashura will be marked on August 19 (Thursday).
What Is Ashura?
The day of Ashura is marked by Muslims as a whole, but for Shia Muslims, it is a major religious observance of the martyrdom at Karbala of Hazrat Hussein, a grandson of the Prophet Muhammad.
It falls on the 10th of Muharram, the first month of the Islamic lunar calendar.
For Shia Muslims, Ashura is a divine day of mourning the martyrdom of Hussein in 680 AD at Karbala in modern-day Iraq.
It is marked with mourning rituals and passion plays re-enacting the martyrdom.
Shia men and women dressed in black also parade through the streets slapping their chests and chanting.
Govt. Issued Fresh Guidelines For Muharram Processions
The Sindh government has ordered the adherence to COVID-19 standard operating procedures (SOPs) during Muharram processions and, making it mandatory to wear face masks by each participant and availability of sanitizers.
According to the notification, those Zakirs will be allowed to conduct majalis who have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.
It has been guided to minimize the participation strength of children and elderly people. Also, it has been directed for the establishment of special vaccination camps for on spot vaccination of individuals attending processions.
In specific guidelines, the home department issued directives for the setup of majalis venues which is open and spacious with proper ventilation arrangements.
Moreover, thermal screening of each participant will be conducted at the entrance.
Health desks should be established to help isolate individuals with COVID symptoms, with signs of cough, flu and fever will not be allowed to enter the venue.
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