Pune: Muslims celebrate muted Eid at home amid COVID19 lockdown

Eid 2020
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Mehab Qureshi

Pune, May 25, 2020: This year Eid-al-Fitr celebration is completely different from what people can recall their celebrations in the last many decades. As religious gatherings are not allowed, Muslims offered namaz at homes. Muslims chose to celebrate the feast low key with only their family members and by also encouraging social distancing. Zakat is being paid by digital wallets or by helping the stranded labourers across the country. In the last many days there was also no Eid shopping as all the shops are closed and e-commerce deliveries are taking longer than usual.


Shamima Khatun (22), a resident of Pune Camp, said, “Ours is a containment zone the lockdown is stringent, but we still prayed but not in a mosque, this time, we prayed at home with my papa leading the prayer. Strangely, this feels nice, and I feel closer to my family even more. My brother in law always sends me gifts but this time, it wasn’t possible, so he transferred money using a digital wallet.”


Zaid Bepari, an IT professional, from Aundh Road, said, “We prayed the Eid salah (namaz) at home and celebrated only with family. We are associated with our mosque in Bopodi. The committee Mohammadiya Jama Masjid Jamaatul Muslimeen has decided to help the needy with the funding that has been raised. So far, 190 families have been given ration and food supplies without any discrimination of religion.”


33-year-old Pasha from Hadapsar said, “The the only distinction that I feel is that I am now at home. I wanted my wife to meet my relatives, but this isn’t possible now. But this doesn’t mean that this is the end of our enjoyment. We are home; we cooked several meals, and last but not least, home is where harmony resides.”


Uneza Qureshi (19), a student, said, “I feel it is a typical day, we did make some tasty dishes to eat, but that’s all we did. It’s usually the same for me, so I don’t feel much difference. I did dress up to click some pictures.”


Prelockdown celebration of Ramadan and Eid : Muslims begin Eid with the practice of the Eid congregational prayer in the mosque or Eidgah. Following the Eid prayer, people huddle together to have a feast with their families and friends, relishing the flavour of a variety of foods beginning with Seviyan/Sheer Khurma. Biryani/non veg food items for lunch is a must.


There is a vibrant culture of gift exchange during Eid. It is customary to gift new clothes and shoes for children. Sometimes, the children get money (Eidi), which they use to buy sweets and snacks to enjoy with their friends and cousins. In westerly countries, children receive gifts instead of money, and parents decorate their homes to create a mood of excitement for the family. 


Eid is meant to celebrate the fulfilment of spiritual duty and to bond and exchange hugs, kisses, and giggling with family, friends, and the community. Eid is celebrated after 29/30 days of fasting in the holy month of Ramadan/Ramzan.



What is Ramadan? 

Muslims recognize the month of Ramadanconsidering that Allah, or God, delivered the first chapter of the Quran to the Prophet Muhammad. During Ramadan, Muslims fast, refrain from pleasures and pray to become nearer to God. It is also a time for families to gather and celebrate.


What is Zakat?

Zakat is meant to be paid to purify the wealth. Consequently, those Muslims who have saving/wealth worth 613.35 grams of silver or 87.49 grams of gold, have to give 2.5% of the money to the poor and needy. Wealthy people must serve the deprived community by helping them in every possible way. Zakat is not a voluntary charity but an obligation. Hence, Zakat is paid every year by Muslims around the world.


What is Eid?

Eid-al-Fitr (also written and pronounced as Eid-ul-Fitr) is the first of two Eids of the Islamic (lunar) calendar year. It rounds off Ramadan, which Muslims celebrate every year to thank Allah’s revelation of the Quran to the Prophet Muhammad.

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