After spending months indoors, easing of curbs brings Eid cheer
August 03 2020 02:06 AM
People at the Wakra family beach. PICTURE: Shaji Kayamkulam

By Shafeeq Alingal/Staff Reporter

Residents are glad that the Eid al-Adha celebrations have brought some cheer to their lives after having spent several months mostly indoors. At the same time, they are aware that due caution has to be exercised during the revelry to prevent a Covid-19 resurgence.
With Phase 3 of the gradual lifting of Covid-19 restrictions getting under way on July 28, just before the Eid holidays started, people have been able to come out of their homes and celebrate the occasion by visiting parks, beaches, the Corniche and other outdoor destinations with their families.
“We stayed indoors during the Eid al-Fitr holidays. On the other hand, the gradual easing of restrictions since June 15 has allowed us to celebrate Eid al-Adha by spending time outdoors. 
The evenings have been full of joy for us and others, as people are able to have a great time at parks and beaches,” said Abdul Raoof Kondotty, an expatriate social worker. The Fereej Abdul Aziz resident took his children to the Museum of Islamic Art Park on the first day of Eid, where he spent a few hours with his family.  
As children under 12 years are not allowed inside malls, outdoor venues have been drawing a large number of families who are keen to give their little ones some precious holiday moments. Also, the heat and humidity have failed to deter them. 
The advent of Phase 3 was also welcomed by believers as they were able to take part in the Eid prayer at mosques and prayer yards around the country. 
“The greatest thing about this Eid al-Adha is that people have been able to take part in the Eid prayer at mosques and prayer grounds. This is something truly special,” said Badrudheen Rahman Thotty, another expatriate. 
The resident of Al Wakra had performed the Eid al-Fitr prayer at home due to the prevailing restrictions and had an online celebration with friends. 
That changed during Eid al-Adha as the authorities allotted 401 mosques and prayer grounds across the country for the Eid al-Adha prayer. This enabled Badrudheen to take part in the prayer at a designated ground in Al Wakra last Friday. While welcoming the opportunity to go out and celebrate a special occasion like Eid, residents also stressed the need to follow the preventive and precautionary measures laid down by the health authorities. 
“The awareness campaigns by the authorities have yielded results. Most people seemed to have cultivated self-discipline and made it a habit. This is visible everywhere as even children could be seen strictly following the measures. They are also careful while disposing of masks,” Abdul Raoof said, adding that most people have accepted the ‘new normal’.
Badrudheen added that worshippers were diligent in following measures like social distancing. “All the measures were followed and things went off smoothly as they chose to comply with the rules,” he added. The health authorities had urged people to exercise due caution while celebrating Eid, as any lack of commitment to the preventive measures could have undesired consequences.

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