Al-Azhar issues Fatwa on President’s request to suspend Friday prayers

By Atta Ur Rehman Khan - Web Editor & Columnist

25th March, 2020

Egypt’s Al-Azhar has issued a Fatwa (edict) on the request of President Dr Arif Alvi permitting suspension of Friday prayers to control the spread of deadly coronavirus pandemic in Pakistan.

President also said on twitter, “I request Ulema to take urgent action to stop #CoronaVirus spread in Pakistan, based on principles of Islam from Quran & Sunnah. Countries that have stopped congregational prayers: UAE, Saudia, Iran, Algeria, Tunisia, Jordan, Kuwait, Palestine, Turkey, Syria, Lebanon, Egypt etc.”

 

According to the details,President Alvi through Egypt’s ambassador in Pakistan had sought guidance from Al- Azhar institution, an authority on Islamic injunctions, for a word on suspension of congregational prayers at mosques amid spike in coronavirus cases.

The president urged the Ulema in the country for urgent action on the Fatwa of Egypt’s Al-Azhar institution that termed it purely Islamic to cancel Friday prayers over coronavirus concerns.

President Alvi mentioned that the countries already suspending congregational prayers included the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Iran, Algeria, Tunisia, Jordan, Kuwait, Palestine, Turkey, Syria, Lebanon and Egypt.

The sources of APP said, The Fatwa stressed that public gatherings, including congregational prayers at mosques, could result in spread of coronavirus and the governments of Muslim countries had full jurisdiction to cancel such events.
It also emphasized amending Azaan (call to prayer) with words ‘Salaat Fi Buyut-e-kum’, meaning ‘pray in your homes’ instead of the usual ‘come to prayer’. Also, families within their homes can arrange group prayers.

The edict says it is obligatory for Muslims to abide by the health instructions of the state in case of crisis and avoid following unofficial information and rumors.

Sources also said, The Fatwa cites Abu Dawood narrating Ibn Abbas,who recounted that Holy Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him) said that fear of sickness is an excuse for missing Juma payers. Moreover, Abd Al-Rahman Ibn Auf stated that the Prophet (PBUH) forbade those with unpleasant smell to avoid going to mosques in order to protect other faithful from disturbance.

Dr Arif Alvi asks Ulema to educate people about #COVID-19

Earlier, President Dr. Arif Alvi Tuesday said that Ulema must play their role in educating people about Covid-19 and urged them to adopt precautionary measures to stop coronavirus outbreak.

According to a press release, He was talking to Minister for Religious Affairs and Interfaith Harmony Pir Noor ul Haq Qadri and Chairman Council of Islamic Ideology Qibla Ayaz, who called on him here.


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