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Posted On: 21 March 2020 04:20 pm
Updated On: 12 November 2020 09:11 am

Crowded beaches, group prayers outside of the closed mosques, are we really doing this right?

Leena Chung
Leena Chung
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The government of Qatar has requested all citizens numerous times to stay home and not go out, unless it is really necessary, in order to avoid contact with others and keep a distance.

What is social distancing?

Social distancing is deliberately increasing the physical space between people to avoid spreading the illness. All the sporting events, festivals, and other gatherings are cancelled to keep the social distance. Other major places where people can gather such as schools, cinemas, mosques, malls, gyms are all closed as well as salons and spas where there is direct contact from a person to a person have been forced to shut down temporarily.

How well are we doing this now?

Many of us try our best to stay home, only go out to work and to get groceries. However, there have been many photos and clips of people in groups being circulated on social media over the weekend.

Credit: Ali Alsulaiti Instagram - people are praying in a group outside of the closed mosque

The Ministry of Endowments and Islamic Affairs (Awqaf) directed the closure of mosques and the suspension of all congressional prayers including the obligatory five prayers and the Friday prayers, starting from March 17th noon. This decision was made to stop the spread of the coronavirus as having a large number of people in one closed space is very risky to everyone. However, people are still gathering outside of the mosques to do a group prayer.

beach in the pearl
Photo credit: Monica Gonazales on Facebook - people chilling on the beach & pool

Beaches on the residential area of the pearl are open and people are enjoying their time getting tanned and paddling. Their distance seems spaced out but is it really necessary to go to the beach while the whole world is suffering from COVID-19 and we have the same challenge in Qatar?

Credit: Alhasmi55 on Twitter - cars lined up onshore

Public beaches are still open and even if they are enforced to shut down, it will be very very difficult for the government to monitor since Qatar has many sandy areas on the shore. Do we really need someone to monitor us? Isn't this for our own lives?


Credit: NouraSE__ on Twitter - motorbikes and people on the corniche

As gyms are shut and many parks are also temporarily closed, people go to corniche to walk and jog around. In the above photo, you can see there are a number of motorbikes parked and people are just chilling around.

Of course, we cannot always keep 6 feet distance from everyone. When you go grocery shopping, you have other people around you. When you are in the elevator, you might have someone else with you in a small space. When you go to pick up the food, you will have to interact with the restaurant staff.

What is important here is, live your life but eliminate unnecessary interaction with others, do not go out unless you really have to and comply with what has been addressed by the government.

Your selfish and careless action defeats the purpose of many other people's efforts and don't forget, #YourSafeIsMySafety!