Mumbai: The Bombay High Court was on Friday informed that the public masses in all the 123 catholic churches in the city have been suspended till April 4, in view of the lockdown due to coronavirus. The HC was further informed by the Archibishop of Bombay that it supports the call for a ‘Janta Curfew’ proposed by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
This comes in the form of an affidavit filed by the Archibishop before a bench of Acting Chief Justice Bhushan Dharmadhikari and Justice Nitin Borkar, which had on Thursday asked the Maharashtra government to explain why the masses were still going on in the city.
The bench had taken cognizance of a letter written to it by a woman advocate highlighting that despite warnings and requests by the authorities that public gatherings should be avoided for containing the epidemic, people were attending masses in the city’s churches.
Pursuant to the order of the HC, the Archbishop of Bombay, Oswald Cardinal Gracias said that all masses have been suspended till April 4. “In light of the changing situation, with a view to protect and safeguard all faithful and humanity as a whole and in support of the Prime Minister’s address including his request to observe Janata Curfew, the Archbishop, has directed that all masses will be suspended from March 21,” the affidavit reads. Having considered the statement, the bench posted the matter for further hearing on April 7.