Muslim clerics have asked people in Uttar Pradesh not to visit graveyards on the forthcoming occasion of Shab-e-Barat in view of the lockdown imposed due to the coronavirus outbreak in the country.
Both the UP Shia Central Waqf Board and the UP Sunni Central Waqf Board have advised people to remain at home and pray for their loved ones.
Shab-e-Barat is marked by Muslims congregating in mosques and visiting graves.
"In view of the lockdown, the board had earlier closed down its mosques for ''namaaz''. We have directed all concerned to ensure that graveyards should not be open for common people on Shab-e-Barat on April 9," UP Shia Central Waqf Board chairman Syed Wasim Rizvi said.
He said employees residing inside the graveyard premises have been asked to clean graves and light a lamp at every grave on the particular day.
Mr Rizvi also urged people to remain at home and pray for their loved ones.
UP Sunni Central Waqf Board also urged people not to walk out on the occasion.
"We have given directives to all the employees of the board to prevent people from coming to the graveyard due to the lockdown," SM Shoeb, Chief Executive Officer, Sunni Central Waqf Board said.
The people should be asked to pray inside their houses so that lockdown is not violated, he said.
Shab-e-Barat, in Islamic faith, means the Night of Forgiveness or the Day of Atonement. It is considered to be an occasion when the Almighty forgives sinners if they pray.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi had on March 24 imposed a 21-day nationwide lockdown to prevent the spread of the coronavirus pandemic.