This Ramadhan Muslims in Saudi Arabia will have to perform Taraweeh and Eid prayers at home to prevent spreading coronavirus.
Saudi Arabia’s grand mufti, Abdul Aziz bin Abdullah Al Al-Sheikh was responding to people’s queries ahead of Ramadan, which starts next week.
He said “As it will not be possible to hold Taraweeh prayers at mosques this year due to the preventive measures taken by authorities to fight the novel coronavirus, people will have to perform them at home to obtain the virtue of praying during the blessed nights of Ramadan,” said Al Al-Sheikh.
The secretary-general of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), Dr. Yousef A. Al-Othaimeen sent a supporting message by video and said that one of the five imperatives of Sharia was saving lives, especially in the face of “an invisible enemy,” where all components of society had the duty to fight it.
The grand mufti Al Al-Sheikh also went to offer Prophetic reasoning behind the announcement “It has been established that Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) performed these prayers at home, and it is known that Taraweeh is Sunnah and not obligatory. If the status quo persists, making it impossible to hold Eid prayer at mosques, people will have to pray at home and no sermon will follow the Eid prayer.”
He said that the Permanent Committee for Scholarly Research and Ifta had issued a fatwa that it was desirable for whoever missed congregational Eid prayers to perform it without a sermon following it. “If making up the prayer for those who missed it with the imam is desirable, this gives us all the more reason to perform the prayer in countries where the congregation is not held because this includes performing the ritual however possible.”
He added that the last date for people to pay Zakat Al-Fitr was before the sunrise of Eid Al-Fitr.
Meanwhile, Al-Othaimeen added on a video call held by the OIC International Islamic Fiqh Academy (IIFA) about the global health emergency said “The participants in the symposium have a great legal and humanitarian responsibility to explain Sharia provisions about dealing with this pandemic, raising awareness of its seriousness, and highlighting the licenses and necessities called for in studies of Fiqh of calamities. We also need to urge everyone to adhere to the necessary preventive measures taken by governments to confront this pandemic.”
Saudi Arabia had announced a lockdown last month and directed tourists to leave the country as the pandemic started to gain ground in the kingdom. The Umrah pilgrimage has been suspended in the country while it remains a question whether or not Hajj will be held this year or not.
Saudi Arabia had also suspended passenger traffic through all land crossings with Jordan , while commercial and cargo traffic is still allowed, and the passage of exceptional humanitarian cases.