DOHA: The devout now need permission from the Ministry of Awqaf and Islamic Affairs for several religious activities that are commonly carried out in mosques during Ramadan.
To sit for ‘itekaf’ (spiritual retreat) in a mosque during Ramadan one now needs the Ministry’s go-ahead.
Muslims generally confine themselves to a mosque for ‘itekaf’ for about 10 days or so in the last weeks of Ramadan for prayers.
Similarly, no one can collect donations in a mosque without the ministry’s approval. Unauthorised people cannot hold religious lectures in mosques. It is common for people to make groups after prayers and hold religious lectures during Ramadan. In a statement, the ministry also barred unauthorised people from giving such lectures.
No one will be allowed to distribute leaflets, brochures and books of any kind, including copies of the Holy Quran, in or outside a mosque during Ramadan without the ministry’s approval. Also, those keen to distribute or host Iftar in a mosque must seek the ministry’s consent. The ministry has urged the devout not to bring along small children during prayers as they cause distraction.
Imams made these announcements during Friday prayers. The ministry also urged people not to encourage beggars during Ramadan.