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April 12, 2021

‘Govt will gift one-Eid and same-day Ramazan’

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April 12, 2021

LAHORE: The clerics said Prime Minister Imran Khan’s stance for considering obscenity and nudity as basic reason of sexual violence is correct and based on facts. Addressing a press conference Sunday, following the meeting of all schools of thought at Muthahida Ulema Board, Pakistan Ulema Council chairman and PM’s special aide on religious harmony and Middle East Hafiz Tahir Mehmood Ashrafi said Prime Minister Imran Khan’s stance against obscenity was misinterpreted. Obscenity and nudity is one of the basic reasons behind the rising incidents of sexual violence, he said. Unicef and several European and American investigation agencies have also pointed out this but unfortunately a certain section of women and men have launched a campaign against the stance of the prime minister and misinterpreted his stance.

Whether the rape and molestation is being made with a boy or girl, it is condemnable and sorrowful, said Hafiz Tahir Ashrafi. No one else has given the status that Islam has given to woman, he added. He said premier’s stance is the representation of the entire nation, whether it is a man or a woman who spreads obscenity and nudity is reprehensible.

During the presser at the Muthahida Ulema Board, Hafiz Muhammad Tahir Mehmood Ashrafi was flanked by leading ulema and religious scholars of different schools of thought including: Maulana Muhammad Shafi Qasmi, Maulana Tahir Aqeel Awan, Maulana Noman Hashir, Maulana Muhammad Aslam Siddiqui, Maulana Asadullah Farooq, Allama Kazim Raza, Allama Tahir-ul-Hassan, Maulana Hanif Bhatti, Maulana Muhammad Ashfaq Potafi, Maulana Zubair Abid, Maulana Abdul Qayyum, Qari Mubashir Rahimi, Maulana Aslam Qadri, Maulana Talha Siddiqui, Qari Ismatullah Muawiyah, Maulana Habib-ur-Rehman Abid, Qari Kifayatullah, Qari Abdul Hakim Athar, Maulana Islamuddin, Maulana Abdul Ghaffar Farooqi, Qari Faisal, Hamza Tahir-ul-Hassan, Maulana Muneeb-ur-Rehman Haideri and others.

Hafiz Tahir Ashrafi appealed to the scholars and leaders of all schools of thought and sects to take precautionary measures during the month of Ramazan in mosques and to keep ‘Ibadaat’ and precautions against coronavirus together in Ramazan. He said mosques will not be closed in Ramazan and implementation will be ensured in letter and spirit on preventive measures and SOPs against coronavirus. The third wave of coronavirus is extremely dangerous and everyone should ensure safety of one another by seeking forgiveness to Allah and observing preventive measures, he added.

He said the government intends to strengthen Masajid-o-Madaris, adding that registration of any mosque and seminary has not been cancelled. The government is holding meeting of Ruet-e-Hilal Committee in Peshawar with the sole purpose of ending differences on moon sighting in the country. No mosque or madrassa is being closed nor has the registration of any madrassa or mosque been cancelled, he added. The process of consultation with the ulema and mashaikh is under way regarding the Waqf Property Act.

Registration of seminaries has started with the education ministry, and if the head of a madrassa or mosque has a complaint against any official for registration process, he can contact the office of Hafiz Muhammad Tahir Mehmood Ashrafi. To a question, Hafiz Tahir Ashrafi said the government would give the gift of one-Eid and same day Ramazan, adding that the meeting of Ruet-e-Hilal Committee in Peshawar is being convened to resolve differences on moon sighting and the affairs of moon sighting are being supervised by Federal Minister for Religious Affairs Noorul Haq Qadri. He said Maulana Abdul Khabir Azad is the new chairman of Ruet-e-Hilal Committee.

Hafiz Tahir Ashrafi also said he has talked to Maulana Abdul Khabir Azad, Minister for Science and Technology Fawad Chaudhry, Minister for Religious Affairs Noorul Haq Qadri and other scholars in this connection and possible assistance will be sought from scientific knowledge and the decision will be made on the basis of Shariah evidence according to Shariah laws. The ulema and Mashaikh also appealed to the traders to reduce the margin of profit in respect of Ramazan. Ashrafi said a respected judge has hurt the feelings of Muslims by saying that the Constitution is superior to Islam. One should keep in mind that Islam is not only the protector of humanity but also commands to protect the rights of animals and plants. The chief justice should take action on this with reference to the esteemed judge. The ulema and mashaikh also announced to support and endorse the following precautionary measures for prayers, Taravee and Itekaaf in mosques and Imambargahs.

1. No carpets or mats will be laid in mosques and Imambargahs, prayers will be offered on clean floors. 2. If the floor is rough, a clean mat can be laid. 3. Those who want to bring their prayer mats from home are allowed to offer prayers on it. 4. Gathering before and after prayers should be avoided. 5. In mosques and Imambargahs where there is a courtyard and open space, it is better to offer prayers in the open space instead of halls. 6. People over 60 years of age, minors and patients suffering from cough, cold, flu etc should not come to mosques and Imambargahs. 7. Prayers and Tarawee should be arranged within the precincts of the mosque and the Imambargah. Praying on the road and sidewalk should be avoided. 8. Floors of the mosque and Imambargah should be washed with chlorinated water. 9. Chlorinated water should be sprayed on mats before prayers. 10 Arrangements should be made in the mosque and Imambargah in such a way that the distance between the worshipers should be at least three feet. 11. Mosques and Imambargahs form a committee of responsible people to ensure precautionary measures. 12 If the organisers of the mosque and the Imambargah mark the floor according to correct distances for the worshipers to stand, it will be easier for the worshippers to say prayers. 13 Visit the mosque and the Imambargah while making ablution at home. Wash your hands with soap for 20 seconds. 14. It is obligatory to wear a mask while entering mosque and the Imambargah and not shaking hands or hugging anyone. 15. Avoid touching your face, you can do this by washing your hands when you return home. 16. In the current situation, the distance between the two I’tikafs will be six feet and all the SOPs will be ensured. 17. Iftar and Sahar should not be arranged collectively in the mosque and Imambargah. 18. Mosques and Imambargah administrations, should keep coordination with respective district and provincial government and police. 19 The management of mosques and Imambargahs is being given conditional permission with these precautionary measures.

20. If during Ramazan, the government feels that these precautionary measures are not being followed or the number of victims has risen to dangerous levels, the government, like other sectors, would review decisions about mosques and Imambargahs, in consultation with scholars, ulema and Mashaikh.