Noida: Seven people were arrested in Greater Noida on Friday for allegedly assembling for a group namaaz in violation of the restrictions imposed under CrPC Section 144 due to the coronavirus outbreak, police said. Also Read - Malayalam Actor Prithviraj Sukumaran Tests Positive for COVID-19 This Time, Urges Contacts to Isolate or Get Tested
Around 20-25 people had gathered inside a mosque in Kalonda village in Greater Noida’s Jarcha area for the Friday prayers after which the police got a call alerting them about the gathering, they said. Also Read - 'Why Will I Have Problems With my Parents?' PV Sindhu Denies Family Rift After Leaving National Camp
CrPC Section 144 (which bars assembly of four or more people) is in force across Gautam Buddh Nagar to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and authorities have been urging people to stay indoors and avoid gatherings, including those religious or political in nature, according to officials. Also Read - Navratri 2020: Patients Perform 'Garba' With Health Workers at Mumbai's COVID-19 Center | Watch
There were around 20-25 people inside the mosque preparing for the prayer when the police reached there. Seven of them have been arrested while the remaining, including the cleric who was supposed to lead the prayer, are absconding. The gathering was done in violation of the lockdown imposed due to coronavirus, a police spokesperson said.
The seven arrestees and those absconding have been booked under IPC sections 188 (disobedience to order duly promulgated by public servant), 269 (unlawfully or negligently spreading infection of any disease dangerous to life) and 270 (malignant act likely to spread infection of disease dangerous to life), the official said.
On April 2, the police arrested 10 people who had allegedly gathered on the terrace of a house in Noida’s Sector 16 for a group namaaz in violation of lockdown restrictions imposed due to coronavirus, according to officials.
An FIR was lodged against them under provisions of the National Disaster Management Act, 2005 and the Uttar Pradesh Epidemic Diseases Act, 1897 after a video surfaced on social media, the officials said.
Gautam Buddh Nagar adjoining Delhi in western Uttar Pradesh has so far recorded 64 positive cases of coronavirus, the highest for any district in the state, according to official figures.
Officials and religious/spiritual scholars have from time to time appealed to people to stay indoors and pray inside their homes during the lockdown period in order to prevent the virus from spreading.