Patna: Bihar government has fixed time for Friday prayers by the government employees for two hours between 12.30 pm to 2.30 pm which will also include lunch-recess, official sources said on Wednesday.

According to a circular issued by the General Administration Department (GAD) on July 20, 2012 by its Joint Secretary N C Jha as we had been following an old circular of 1934 and thus a fresh look to curtail absenteeism, the sources said.

"Though Muslim employees have been availing special permission to offer Friday prayers since the British regime, we have received public complaints regarding fixing time limit for Friday prayers," according to the circular.

The slot fixed for the purpose of offering Friday prayers would be for two hours between 12.30pm to 2.30 pm, including the time for lunch starting July 20, the Circular noted.

The circular eventually came a day before the holi month of Ramzan started.

The circular was issued after hectic consultations Chief Minister Nitish Kumar had with his minister Sahid Ali Khan and Principal Secretary of the State Home department Aamir Subhhani and other top officials, including Chief Secretary Navin Kumar and General Administration Department Principal Secretary Dipak Kumar.

(Agencies)

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