NEW DELHI : The Delhi High Court on Wednesday permitted the reopening of four floors of the Nizamuddin Markaz in view of Shab-e-Baraat festival later this week.
The Markaz has remained shut since March 3, 2020, following a spurt in Covid positive cases on the premises.
A bench of Justice Manoj Kumar Ohri also asked authorities to remove all the restrictions capping worshippers in the Markaz premises, as it pointed out that the management had ensured the Covid protocols and social distancing of the devotees on each floor.
As per the Delhi Disaster Management Authority (DDMA) guidelines, only less than a hundred people can be allowed on each floor. However, regarding the limitation of worshippers, the bench said: “Once they say that they will maintain Covid protocol, then it is fine. It should be left to the wisdom of the devotees.”
Earlier, the same bench had directed the Delhi Waqf Board to file an application before the police station concerned seeking permission for the reopening of the entire masjid premises in Nizamuddin Markaz for offering prayers.
Dealing with the Waqf Board’s plea for reopening of the religious place considering recent guidelines issued by the DDMA, the court had asked the board to make an application with the SHO of Hazrat Nizamuddin Police Station immediately.
Prior to that, the court had asked the Centre’s clear stand on the issue, asking why can’t the mosque be opened fully.
Advocate Rajat Nair, appearing on behalf of the Centre, said that the offering of ‘namaz’ by five people was allowed earlier, and can be done this year also in the religious festival.
To this, the bench had asked: “Mr Nair, you please seek instructions as to in case there is no objection to opening of first floor, what objection may be there for opening of remaining portion, de hors your submission that you have no objection as far as religious festivals are concerned. Why not for everyday?” — IANS