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‘Stay home. Stay safe and help stop Coronavirus’: A Slogan of the Muslims for the Ramzan month 2020

For the Muslims around the world, Ramadan month, which is slated to be celebrated this year from April 25 to May 25, is one of the most revered months of the year. Since the world is in the grip of Corona pandemic and lockdown imposed in many countries including India, celebrations of Ramadan month this year is an acid test for the Muslim community, like their Hindu and Christian brethren who had also faced similar situation during Ram Navmi and Good Friday respectively. While Saudi authorities have stopped worshippers from entering and praying at the two holy mosques in Mecca and Medina in an effort to combat the spread of Corona virus, some mosques in the Middle-East have closed their doors for the same cause. Moreover, various Muslim organisations across the world have suspended prayer services in the mosques apprehending spread of the virus and have advocated for virtual congregations during the Ramadan month, so that prayers can be observed from the safety of the worshippers’ homes.

In the prevailing situation, instances of congregations of believers in some Mosques in different parts of the country to offer prayers are disappointing and counterproductive in the fight against the virus. Like earlier occasions, the Imams, Clerics and intellectuals are required to come forward and impress upon the community to follow the Covid-19 guidelines of the Government while celebrating the Ramadan month, which will help in strengthening the fight against Corona virus. As a response to the call of the nation and to defeat the dreaded Corona virus, the Muslims, who will fast during the month from sunrise to sunset as an act of worship, have to ensure that they break their fast or ‘Iftar’ at sunset in their respective homes only, instead of large public spaces, in order to maintain social distance, which has been proved to be a formidable weapon against the pandemic. Further, instead of going for extended evening prayers (Tarawih) in mosques, which is a ritual during Ramadan month, they need to offer prayers at home. This act of the Muslims will serve the true spirit inherent in the syncretic and Ganga-Jamuni Tehzeeb culture of India.

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