JOHOR BARU, April 15 — The Johor government assured the public that the handling of Covid-19-positive non-Muslim remains for funeral rites is safe as it follows the guidelines that have been set.

Johor Health and Environment Committee chairman R. Vidyananthan said the federal government had issued guidelines on the management of non-Muslim remains that are Covid-19-positive cases.

He explained that the handling of the non-Muslim remains will be monitored by an assistant health environment officer that will also cover the areas in the mortuary, cemetery or crematorium.

“Those managing the funerals do not have to worry because the procedure will be monitored by officers who will ensure the safety of those handling the remains and also the family members that are present,” said Vidyananthan in a statement here today.

Vidyananthan said that the handling of non-Muslim remains in Johor comes under the Prevention and Control of Infectious Diseases (Local Area Measures (No. 2) 2020) regulation.

He said the regulation had caused public worry over the handling of remains during the movement control order (MCO) period, especially for non-Muslim families.

The enacted gazette provides that no person shall be permitted to assemble or participate in any assembly in any premises within any area of ​​infection whether for religious, sports, recreational, social or cultural purposes.

At the same time, Vidyananthan reminded the management of funeral parlours and undertakers to take into account the rules relating to public assembly when handling remains not related to Covid-19.

“The number involved should be in a small group of no more than 10 and include only important family members, immediate family members and religious heads.

“Any form of burial, cremation and disposal of ashes in a river are allowed, but only involving immediate family members,” said Vidyananthan, who is also the Kahang assemblyman.

On the Johor Covid-19 updates, Vidyananthan said the state Health Department reported the addition of eight new cases yesterday, bringing the total to 587 cases to date.

“A total of two new deaths was recorded yesterday, bringing the total number of deaths to 15 in the state.

“As of yesterday, Johor also recorded a total of 349 cumulative cases that have recovered. This trend is a positive sign and it is hoped that the statistics of those cured in the state will continue to increase,” he said.