SHAH ALAM, March 27 — The Sultan of Selangor Sultan Sharafuddin Idris Shah has given his consent for the congregational prayers without physical distancing to be performed in mosques and surau statewide effective April 1.

Selangor Islamic Religious Department (JAIS) director Datuk Mohd Shahzihan Ahmad said the decision was made after High Highness held talks with several state government agencies and members of the Selangor Royal Council.

“His Highness has done the research and refined several important matters, especially the steps that need to be taken to avoid the effects of Covid-19 besides ensuring the well-being of the people is protected and mosques and surau continue to function as centres of worship for Muslims.

“His Highness also consented for the Tarawih prayers to be performed up to 20 rak’ahs during the month of Ramadan this year in all mosques and surau in the state,” he said in a statement here today.

Mohd Shahzihan said the congregants were required to follow certain regulations such as only fully vaccinated individuals would be allowed to attend the mosque or surau.

“Individuals aged 18 and below, who have completed the vaccination are allowed to attend mosques and surau apart from having to bring a prayer mat and wear a face mask.

“Those with symptoms are asked not to attend any activities at mosques and surau in order to maintain the well-being of other congregants,” he said.

He said that Sultan Sharafuddin also expressed concern over the high number of Covid-19 cases in Selangor and advised the people in the state to remain vigilant and adhere to standard operating procedures (SOPs) and instructions issued by the authorities from time to time.

“In Selangor, a total of 10,413 deaths were recorded as of March 19, with more than 50 per cent of them being Malays.

“Therefore, His Highness advised the people of Selangor to remain vigilant and continue to comply with the SOPs and follow all instructions issued by the Ministry of Health (MOH) from time to time,” he said. — Bernama