Muslims in the city perform Jumma namaz inside home
Kolkata: In a bid to maintain social distancing amid the ongoing three-week-long lockdown to prevent the spread of COVID-19, people across the city performed Jumma prayers in their home on Friday.
"I didn't go to the mosque to perform Friday prayers today. My father, brother and I performed Jumma namaz in our home. We are maintaining social distancing first and then performing our namaz. In my locality all the people have performed Friday prayers in their home," said Afaque Haider, a resident of Rajabazar.
He reiterated that all the mosques in Rajabazar, Park Circus, Kidderpore, Ripon Street and other places witnessed no crowd of people during the Friday namaz.
Depending upon the area, Friday prayer, Congregational prayer or Jumma namaz is usually performed by Muslims in mosques between 1 pm and 1.30 pm across the city.
The imams (those who lead the namaz in Masjids) of the mosques in Muslim-
dominated areas (Park Circus, Rajabazar, Kidderpore, Topsia and Metiabruz) made announcements urging people not to come to the mosques to perform Friday namaz in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.
While Congregational prayer is a prayer that Muslims perform every Friday just after noon instead of the Zuhur prayer, they perform namaz five times a day according to the sun's path regardless of time zones.
Several thousand people offer namaz at Nakhoda Mosque on a daily basis. The number exceeds 30,000 on Fridays.
Moulana Shafique Qasmi, imam of Nakhoda Masjid popularly known as Badi Masjid of Kolkata, urged people to perform namaz at their homes in the wake of Coronavirus outbreak, triggering lockdown across the country.
"During Friday prayer, there were sermons. We have already restricted entry of people inside the mosque even during prayers to prevent large gatherings. The imam conducted the Jumma prayers within the mosque premises on Friday. Only muzezein and khadims (masjid staff) performed namaz inside the mosque. Others were asked to perform Zuhur namaz in their houses," said Qasmi.
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