By Idowu Abdullahi,
The Imam of the Grand Mosque in Mecca, Saudi Arabia, Sheikh Abdul Rahman Al-Sudais, has disclosed that the evening congregational prayer during Ramadan fasting (Taraweeh) will be shortened as part of measures to mitigate the spread of coronavirus in the country.
Besides, he noted that the Itikaf, an Islamic practise consisting of staying in a mosque during the last ten days of Ramadan, devoting oneself to ibadah (an act of worship) during these days and staying in seclusion had been cancelled in both Harams while Umrah, an Islamic pilgrimage to Mecca that can be undertaken at any time of the year, better known as lesser Ḥajj will remain suspended until such times control is gained against the virus.
Al-Sudais, who doubled as the President of the General Presidency for the Affairs of the Two Holy Mosques, said the new protocol was in line with the Kingdom highest authorities and the instructions and precautions issued by the Ministry of Health to contain the spread of the global pandemic.
The Imaam, through a statement shared on social media by the HaramainInfo said the Taraweeh which will be held without public attendance, will be reduced to ten Raka’ah with the first Imaam leading the first three tasleemat and the second Imaam leading the last two tasleemah with Shafa and witr.
He also revealed that the services of Iftaar, which is the evening meal with which Muslims end their daily Ramadan fast at sunset has been cancelled in both Harams, and baskets containing foods and fruits will be distributed around the city of Makkah & Madinah.
Furthermore, he said the completion of the Qur’an will be recited between the Taraweeh and Qiyaam (Tahajjud) with Khatm holding on the 29th night in Qiyaam (Tahajjud), while continued health checks will be administered for all workers and attendees for the funeral prayers upon their entry into Haram.
Recall that the Saudi Arabian government had earlier disclosed that the evening congregational prayer during Ramadan fasting (Taraweeh) and the Eid al-Fitr feast prayers to mark the end of the fasting will be performed at homes amid lockdown to maintain the suspension of group prayers at mosques until such times control is gained against coronavirus globally.
It explained that the decision had become imperative as parts of measures to flatten the curve of the virus in the country after the kingdom’s reported 6,380 cases of the highly contagious respiratory disease and recorded eighty-three fatalities.
Ramadhan 1441 Update:
Announced By Sheikh Abdul Rahman As Sudais pic.twitter.com/7egcj4Z0ZS
— 𝗛𝗮𝗿𝗮𝗺𝗮𝗶𝗻 (@HaramainInfo) April 20, 2020