Dhaka, Bangladesh
Follow spirit of Ramadan to fight COVID-19

Follow spirit of Ramadan to fight COVID-19

The Eid-ul-Fitr is going to be very different this year. After a whole month of fasting comes the day of grand feast and festivity. Social distancing measures due to the deadly aggression of the lethal COVID-19 mean that the festive nature of the Eid will be absent in its traditional form. But it goes without saying that this year the Eid gives us a unique opportunity to serve the humanity suffering from the grievous impact of coronavirus. Ramadan is a special month of fasting and prayer. From religious perspective, Ramadan has always been a time of self-reflection, restraint and altruism. The spirit of Ramadan calls us to individually and collectively tackle the challenges posed by COVID-19. We have a moral obligation to stand by the most vulnerable in our society on a scale larger than perhaps any other time. We should think of this as a rare opportunity to serve our faith, at a time when it is most urgent. In Islam the idea of altruism is the preference for others in their woes. The concept gives precedence to other persons over individual wants. In fact, special occasions like Ramadan and the Eid, bring out the very best of Islamic altruism. Then again, the concept of Zakaat, one of the five pillars of Islam, comes into play a major role in the life of Muslims. The self-sordid interest is never given a nod in Islam. The Muslims are expected to provide, as religious duty, 2.5 percent of their total savings and wealth to the marginalized, poor and needy. This forms the very cornerstone of Islamic theology and is one of the principal duties which are promoted during the Ramadan. It is a kind of individualized and discretionary fiscal policy measure used to enhance equitable wealth distribution within communities. When it comes to supporting measure to alleviate hunger and poverty, either through charitable measures or Zakaat initiatives, Muslims should be more altruistic during the month of Ramadan and on Eid day. During this unique phase when congregations are discouraged, personal restraint encouraged, and Physical interactions with community members barred, our entire focus as Muslims should be directed towards supporting the fight against COVID-19. The government cannot address COVID-19 alone and on its own. Citizens, therefore, must step up their efforts to strengthen hands of the government and that is the only way that we can ensure that our people have a safe future. We would, therefore, urge our people to direct resources towards the most vulnerable by being imbued with the spirit of Ramadan.

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