Derbyshire Constabulary would like to acknowledge Ramadan, a very special and blessed month which contains innumerable virtues and rewards for Muslims.
Ramadan is the name of the ninth month of the Islamic calendar and is the holiest month of the year for Muslims.
This year the holy month begins during the evening of Thursday 23rd April or Friday, 24th April (depending on the moonsighting) and will end during the evening of Saturday, 23rd May or Sunday 24th May (determined by moonsighting).
We understand that COVID -19 and the government’s restrictions will have an impact on those observing Ramadan, not least as Mosques will not be open for usual prayers.
Whilst the Muslim Council of Britain has issued guidance which can be found here, we have also been speaking to Mr Nazir Hussain of the Derby Jamia Mosque, who gave the following guidance to Muslims observing Ramadan this year:
- All local Mosques will be closed to the public and so we urge people not to attend, all prayers should be conducted at home
- People should not meet up with others outside their family home to take part in prayers
- Unless circumstances change (which they will not until at least Thursday 7th May) everyone is reminded to abide by government guidance and remain at home during Ramadan. This includes refraining from attending community and family gatherings such as Iftar (breaking fast).
Mr Hussain added:
“This is a testing time for all communities and as Ramadan approaches we think of all those that have been affected by the COVID-19 pandamic.
“We urge all Muslims to continue to observe Ramadan but to do so within the government’s guidelines in order to save lives, protect the NHS and all our families.”
Inspector Keith Chambers, who is in charge of policing in the west of the city of Derby that has a large Muslim community, said:
“Lots of my colleagues will be observing Ramadan along with the rest of the Muslim community of Derbyshire.
“We acknowledge this sacred time and ask that it is observed within the government guidance in order to keep all in the community safe and to protect the NHS as they deal with this pandemic.
“My officers have been policing the restrictions since the start of the lockdown and will continue to do so using an approach of engage, explain, encourage and enforce and this will be the same throughout Ramadan.
“The current restrictions are in place until Thursday 7th May and of course we will re-assess the guidance, in respect of Ramadan, as and when things change at that point.”
Leaflets and advice on the COVID restrictions can be found in various different languages here.