Raya SOP expected to be out soon

Spot check: Cpl Zulkarnain Ibrahim (centre) and Cpl Sagunan from IPD Serdang’s patrol car unit checking the registration book at a restaurant in Bandar Puchong Jaya. — AZHAR MAHFOF/The Star

PUTRAJAYA: The scale at which Hari Raya Aidilfitri can be celebrated this year will be known soon, depending on the standard operating procedure the government is likely to put in place to curb the Covid-19 surge.

But many expect that the announcement by Senior Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob this afternoon will see stricter rules and regulations, including the possibility of banning gatherings amidst concern that such activities can trigger infections.

One thing for sure is that interstate travel will not be allowed as the government already said the existing travel ban will continue to remain until May 17.

Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin chaired the National Security Council special meeting yesterday and among others, discussed the proposed SOP for the celebration.

Sources said the proposed SOP is “close” to the guidelines issued for last year’s Hari Raya.

“But there are likely to be some changes made to suit the current pandemic situation, ” they said.

Based on last year’s Hari Raya SOP, there would be a 20-people limit, depending on the size of the house, for open house visits on the first day, with no overnight visitors allowed.

The SOP for Pesta Kaamatan and Hari Gawai is also likely to be announced soon as these festivities take place after Hari Raya.

Pesta Kaamatan is a public holiday in Sabah on May 30 and 31 while Hari Gawai, celebrated in Sarawak, is on June 1 and 2.

Meanwhile, in his non-health-related Covid-19 report, Ismail Sabri said police arrested 519 individuals for SOP violations on Sunday, including for failure to register details when entering premises (207), not wearing face masks (50), no physical distancing (72), and partaking in activities at entertainment centres (60).

Of those arrested, 508 were slapped with fines while the remaining 11 were remanded.

Ismail Sabri also announced that an enhanced MCO will be imposed on Taman Tanah Putih Baru in Kuantan, Pahang, for 14 days beginning tomorrow.

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