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COVID-19: Lakhs gather at Islamic cleric’s funeral in UP

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Amid the surging Covid-19 cases across Uttar Pradesh, India a large gathering was witnessed at the funeral of an Islamic cleric, Qazi Hazrat Abdul Hameed Mohammed Salimul Qadri, in Badaun district. The police have filed a case against unknown persons after an alleged video of the funeral went viral on social media. Thousands of followers of the cleric were seen flouting social distancing norms and other Covid protocols prescribed by the state government while attending funerals.

Thousands of people joined the funeral procession without wearing a mask. There was also a ruckus among the followers of the Islamic cleric over taking his body for the funeral. The Uttar Pradesh police and district administration failed to take action against the crowd at the funeral.

The attendees thronged the madrasa Alia Qadria from Monday morning. To control the spread of the Covid-19 infection, the state government had ordered a strict ‘Corona curfew’ till May 17 but the crowd at the funeral procession continued to swell with the police failing to stop them. Apart from the city, thousands of people from all over the district attended the funeral.

Additional Superintendent of Police, Pravin Chauhan, said that due to it being a religious matter and a funeral the police maintained restraint. But a case has now been registered against unknown persons and an investigation is underway.

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