Offer Namaz at Home in View of Coronavirus Pandemic: Shariah Council of Jamaat, Renowned Clerics Ask Muslims
Mumtaz Alam & Afsal Rahman | India Tomorrow
NEW DELHI, MARCH 25— In the wake of the unprecedented COVID-19 or Coronavirus disease, which has claimed thousands of lives across the globe, including many in India, eminent Muslim religious organizations and renowned clerics have appealed to the Muslim community to stay indoors and offer Namaz at home. They have said that Azaan will be called as usual from the mosques but only Imam, Muezzin (one who calls for prayers) and other staff will offer Namaz inside the mosques. Other residents will offer Namaz at their homes.
Worldwide, over three lakh people have been infected with the highly contagious disease and over 13,000 of them have died. In India, the number of active Coronavirus patients has crossed 500 mark. While 40 have been cured and discharged, nine have died, said the Union Ministry of Health. In view of the spread of the virus, the Union government has imposed nationwide complete lockdown for 21 days from Tuesday midnight.
The Shariah Council of Jamaat-e-Islami Hind has said: “The Coronavirus or COVID-19 has acquired the status of a pandemic. The number of people affected by it is increasing very fast. Many states have announced lockdown. Medical experts have pointed out that this disease spreads by being near each other, shaking hands and by touching things that are then touched by others. The possibility of the spread of the virus increases with large gatherings of people.”
Appeal from Shariah Council of Jamaat-e-Islami Hind
“The Shariah Council reflected on this issue, considering the Islamic teachings that lay great importance to worship as well as the sanctity of human life and issued a number of instructions to the people to follow to check the spread of the deadly virus infection”, said Maulana Syed Jalaluddin Umari, President, Shariah Council and Syed Sadatullah Hussaini, President, Jamaat-e-Islami Hind, in a joint statement on Monday.
*Disinfectants should be used in mosques and all medical precautions should be exercised that are recommended by health experts.
*Five times azaan (call to prayer) should be given in the mosques as it is a symbol of Islam.
*The Imam, Muezzin, Khadim, and administrators of the mosque should observe the prayer (namaz) in congregation after exercising all precautionary measures. All the other members of the public should pray at home in congregation with the members of their family including women.
*In the same manner, the Friday prayer (Juma namaz) should also be observed (only by Imam, Muezzin, Khadim, and administrators of the mosque). The prayer and the khutbah (speech) should be completed in the minimum possible period and the remaining public should do the Zohar prayer at home.
The Shariah Council has also asked people to get engaged in azkaar (remembrance of God) and religious incantations at home and seek repentance and forgiveness from Allah. It has also asked people to give sadaqah and charity to the poor and needy who are jobless and economically deprived.
Imam Ahmed Bukhari of Jama Masjid, Delhi
Maulana Syed Ahmed Bukhari, Imam of Delhi’s Jama Masjid, has made an announcement from the minarets of the historic mosque, asking people to stay indoors and offer Namaz at homes.
“I appeal to all of you to go inside your homes. Please offer Namaz at your homes. Azaan will be called from Jama Masjid and Namaz will also be offered here but people from outside the mosque will not be allowed in. Only people who live inside the mosque will offer namaz in congregation. Only Imam, Muezzin and Khateeb can offer Namaz in mosques, all other residents of the locality should offer Namaz in their homes,” said Maulana Bukhari.
“Our Ulema have released an appeal and said that those who are offering Namaz at homes will also get reward equal to Namaz in congregation in mosques,” he added.
Imarat-e Shariah, Karnataka
Maulana Sagheer Ahmed Rashadi, Ameer-e-Shariat, Imarat-e Shariah, Karnataka, has also asked people to offer Namaz at homes.
Talking to India Tomorrow over phone from Bengaluru, Maulana Rashadi said: “Only Imam, Muezzin and mosque staff are offering prayers in mosques. A few local residents also turn up. We are regularly announcing from all mosques appealing to people to offer prayers at home. Its result is visible as very few people are offering prayers in mosques.”
He said this is an emergency situation and people should take it seriously.
“We have also issued a letter from Imarat-e-Shariah to all mosques in the state. It is an emergency situation. People are offering prayers at home out of compulsion, so In Sha Allah, Allah Almighty will give them rewards equal to congregation prayers of mosques,” said Maulana Rashadi.
Maulana Khalid Rashid Firangi Mahli, Lucknow
Lucknow’s renowned cleric Maulana Khalid Rashid Firangi Mahli also told India Tomorrow that he has issued an appeal to people asking them to offer Namaz at homes.
“I have also issued an appeal urging people to stay at home and offer prayers at home. I have told people that there is health emergency situation in the country and there is flexibility in the Shariah. Among preventive measures announced to combat the Coronavirus endemic, social distancing is a basic step. In the lockdown order, government has also said that all religious places will remain closed,” he said.
“Azaan will be called from mosques and those who live inside mosque like Imam, Muezzin and other staff will offer Namaz in mosques. None will be allowed from outside. People should offer namaz at home. Family members can offer namaz in congregation in home while maintaining a distance. People in Lucknow are following our appeal,” said Maulana Khalid Rashid.
Jamiat Ahle Hadees
Taking serious note of the Coronavirus issue, Jamiat Ahle Hadees Hind has also issued a notice asking people to offer Namaz at home.
“Taking preventive measures to escape from coronavirus is a religious, communitarian and humanitarian duty,” said Jamiat’s Department of Education and Guidance in its notice. It urged people to offer prayers at home.
It also asked the muezzin and other staff of mosques to keep the premises clean and sanitised.