Eid under lockdown: Residents skip shopping, help migrants with food
Eid-ul-Fitr marks the end of the fasting month of Ramzan and is expected to be a low-key affair this time with people planning to stay at home and celebrate with immediate family members.
With the country set to celebrate Eid-ul-Fitr on Monday, Muslims in the district, are preparing to mark the festival in a muted manner with restriction in place due to the outbreak of coronavirus disease (Covid-19). In a departure from the usual norm, the festival will take place without mass congregation prayers as mosques remain closed in view of the ongoing lockdown.
Eid-ul-Fitr marks the end of the fasting month of Ramzan and is expected to be a low-key affair this time with people planning to stay at home and celebrate with immediate family members. While restrictions having eased considerably in the current phase of the lockdown, most people said that they were either planning to stay indoors or spend time sharing food and resources with people belonging to lesser privileged sections of the society.
Arshad, a Nuh resident, said that the usual excitement surrounding the festival was missing due to the threat of the pandemic.
“We have not done any Eid shopping this year. Family members, including children, will be wearing their old clothes. These are tumultuous times but throughout the month of Ramzan, people made the efforts to take care of each other. Fruits and water have been arranged daily for migrants who are crossing the region. We are planning to continue with the practice on Eid as well,” said Arshad, who goes by his first name.
Mohd Arif, a social worker, has been distributing food and ration kits to people travelling back home to their states on the KMP (Kundli-Manesar-Palwal) Expressway since the past week. “We are preparing vegetarian biryani for distribution among those who travelling back home and providing them with a food kit for the rest of their journey. The food kit includes grams, biscuits, and energy drinks. We are also providing them with masks and Dettol,” said Arif.
Arif said that Eid too would be spent catering to the needs of people and providing them with food and water in the heat. “People have been walking on foot to reach their villages in other states. They are in dire circumstances and helping them will remain our priority even on Eid,” said Arif. He said that other residents were also pitching in with support and providing bananas and water bottles to passers-by.
Rakshanda Fatima, a resident of Sector 52, said that the biggest change this year would be people performing Eid namaz at home. “We will be performing the Eid prayers at home this year. There will be no going out and meeting friends. No parties,” said Fatima, who usually travels to her home town Lucknow for the festival but would not be doing so due to the lockdown.
She said that venturing out was too risky with new containment zones being notified every other day. “In our neighbourhood, a society was recently declared as a containment zone. The best precaution is to stay at home. We have not stepped out for Eid shopping either. There is a no point,” she said.
Mufti Mohammed Saleem Qasmi, president of the Gurugram unit of Jamiat Ulema-e-Hind, has appealed to residents and asked them to celebrate the festival at home with family. “The circumstances this year are different. We are under lockdown conditions due to which there are restrictions. Some shops have opened up with the easing of restrictions, but we need to remember that shops have been opened for necessary purchases and we should not indulge in unnecessary shopping. The month of Ramzan was marked with simplicity this year and we should continue the same practice for Eid,” said Qasmi.
Qasmi said that with mosques not being open to the public, Eid prayers could be offered at home as per norms with family members. “People should at home and spend time with family members. We should ensure that people do not step out unnecessarily at the cost of health. In the absence of the requisite number of people needed for Eid namaz, people could offer Chasht namaz,” said Qasmi.