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The festival marks the end of the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan, the ninth month of the Islamic calendar
The Eid-ul-Fitr, one of the greatest religious festivals of the Muslims, will be celebrated across the country on Monday with religious fervour and zeal.
The National Moon Sighting Committee declared the date of this year’s Eid-ul-Fitr at a meeting at the conference room of the Islamic Foundation at Baitul Mokarram National Mosque on Saturday with Religious Affairs Secretary Md Nurul Islam in the chair, reports BSS.
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Eid-ul-Fitr is an Arabic word meaning “festival of breaking of the fast.”
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The festival marks the end of the Muslim fasting month of Ramadan, the ninth month of the Islamic calendar.
Muslims abstain from eating and drinking from dawn to dusk during the holy Ramadan.
On the Eid day morning, Muslims gather at mosques and prayer venues to perform Eid prayers and greet each other. The festival is celebrated by visiting friends and relatives, hosting food parties, and sharing sweets.
Children not only get new clothes and shoes but also receive cash gifts called “Salami” from their elders, relatives, and well-wishers.
The occasion is seen as a time of forgiveness and of giving thanks to Allah for helping people to complete their month-long spiritual fasting. Many Muslims distribute cash and food to the less fortunate ones.
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President M Abdul Hamid and Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has greeted the countrymen as well as the Muslims across the world on the occasion of the holy Eid-ul-Fitr, the greatest religious festivals of the Muslim community.
They issued separate messages on Sunday praying for continued peace, progress, and prosperity of the country and the Muslim community around the world.
In a message on the holy Eid-ul-Fitr President M Abdul Hamid called upon the people of the country to celebrate the Eid festival maintaining health rules and social distancing with utmost caution.
“The Eid-ul-Fitr of this year is being celebrated in a different situation due to the outbreak of Covid-19 . . . Stay sound and try to keep others well – would be the expectation of this year’s Eid celebration” he said.
Echoing the same as the president, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in her message said: "We are celebrating Eid-ul-Fitr amid an abnormal environment. The whole world stands still due to coronavirus. The normal life is halted. An invisible virus puts the life of people at risk,” she said.
Sheikh Hasina urged people to avoid mass gatherings, and stay at their homes and share the joy and happiness of Eid with their family members.
This year, the Eid-ul-Fitr is going to be celebrated with a different outlook as the government has imposed strict restrictions on all the social gatherings and urged the Muslim devotees to celebrate Eid with only family members indoors instead of visiting relatives’ houses and outing around in the wake of the global Covid-19 pandemic.
The Dhaka Metropolitan Police (DMP) on Friday issued a 14-point instruction for Muslim devotees and mosque committees in observance of the Eid-ul-Fitr.
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It called upon the city dwellers to celebrate the Eid-ul-Fitr with family members at home and advised all to refrain from visiting relatives, neighbours, and entertainment spots in the city in a bid to contain the spread of coronavirus.
The instruction also said devotees would have to perform ablution from home before coming for Eid prayers, instead of using the ablution room of the mosques.
Earlier, on May 14, the Religious Affairs Ministry issued a circular asking the authorities concerned to hold Eid jamaat of the Eid-ul-Fitr at nearby mosques instead of an eidgah (an open-air enclosure reserved for Eid prayers).
The minister also urged the Muslim devotees not to hug each other after Eid-ul-Fitr prayers, which is the common scenario of the Eid festival to exchange greetings.
In line with the government directives, Dhaka North and South City Corporations decided not to hold any Eid jamaat on the open spaces, including at the National Eidgah Maidan on the High Court premises, in Dhaka.
Besides, the historic Eid jamaat at the Sholakia Maidan in Kishoreganj has also been suspended this year amid the Covid-19 crisis.
However, five Eid jamaats will be held at the Baitul Mukarram National Mosque like every year, according to Islamic Foundation.
The first Eid jamaat will be held at 7am on the Eid day while it will be followed by other four congregations at the same venue to help the devotees perform Eid prayers maintaining the social distancing and health guidelines properly.
The second, third, fourth and fifth jamaats will be held at 8am, 9am, 10am and 10:45am respectively while separate khatibs of the national mosque will conduct the congregations.
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Bangladesh Television, Bangladesh Betar, and other private TV channels will air special programs on the occasion of the Eid-ul-Fitur.
The decision was taken at a meeting of the National Moon Sighting Committee last evening after reviewing the information of Shawwal moon sighting.
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This year, Eid will be celebrated in a different scenario without any outdoor programme and Eid jamaat at Eidgahs across the country due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The government has urged Muslims to avoid Eidgah or other open places for Eid congregations and offer prayers at locals mosques maintaining recommended health advice.
The Ministry of Religious Affairs issued an emergency notification on May 14 in this regard, saying the decision was taken due to the prevailing Covid-19 pandemic.
"Although the Islamic Sharia encourages offering Eid prayer at Eidgah or open places, the devotees are now requested to offer their prayers at nearby mosques due to the coronavirus situation," the notification said, adding that there can be several Eid jamaat, if necessary.
It also suggested disinfecting mosques before the Eid prayer and not rolling out carpets on the floors.
The devotees have been urged to bring prayer mats from home. Besides, arrangements should be made at the entrances of the mosques for washing hands, the notification added.
The devotees must wear masks inside mosques and avoid using prayer mats and caps that were stored earlier there.
Children, elderly people, people with physical ailment, and those taking care of the sick should not be allowed to attend the jamaats.
Apart from these, the devotees were requested to shun handshaking and hugging after the prayer -- a common practice around the world.
However, amid the risk of virus infection, thousands of people have already left the capital to celebrate Eid with their near and dear ones at their respective village homes.
Television channels and radio stations will telecast special programmes on the occasion of Eid.