A viral Twitter post, changed the life of a 24-year-old Pakistani carpenter living in Saudi Arabia. Muhammad Waqas who moved to the Kingdom four years ago, always wanted to become a model but could not pursue the career. However, a viral Twitter post by his friend landed him a modelling opportunity within couple of weeks.
Pakistani doctor in Saudi Arabia, Zia Ullah Khan Dawar, was awarded a medal by the Kingdom’s health ministry in recognition of his services as one of the “captains” of the COVID-19 team. Dawar has been living in the Kingdom for last four years and is currently working with the kingdom’s health ministry in Jeddah as part of a COVID-19 surveillance and data analysis team.
Saudi Arabia has offered financial assistance for the construction of Pakistan’s first state-owned Quran complex in Islamabad. The government will be building the complex to preserve historical manuscripts of the Muslim scripture. The center will also oversee and set standards for the publication of the Quran in the country and would recycle worn pages of the holy book.
The Religious Affairs Ministry of Pakistan has decided to return the money of this year’s successful applicants of government’s Hajj scheme. Imran Siddiqui, the ministry’s spokesperson said that an emergency meeting was convened to discuss the mechanism after Saudi Arabia’s plans to host the pilgrimage in closed borders. Only 1000 pilgrims residing in the Kingdom will be allowed to perform Hajj this year.
Saudi Arabia on Tuesday confirmed that only “very limited numbers” of people will be allowed to perform the annual hajj pilgrimage due to Coronavirus fears. The kingdom’s Ministry of Hajj said only people of various nationalities already residing in the country would be allowed to perform the large pilgrimage, which is set to begin this year at the end of July.
More than 90,000 mosques across Saudi Arabia, except for those in Makkah, will start reopening from May 31 after a two-month closure to curb the COVID-19 spread. According to the Ministry of Islamic Affairs, Call and Guidance, the sanitisation, cleaning and maintenance process of the mosques has been completed. The resumption of services mosques will be carried out in line with the coronavirus mandatory guidelines issued by the ministry.
Saudi Arabia will partially lift the curfew in all regions of the kingdom from 9am to 5pm, starting Sunday through Wednesday, May 13. The order was issued by King Salman. According to state news agency SPA, the 24-hour curfew will, however, remain in Makkah and in previously isolated neighbourhoods. The order also allowed the opening of some economic and commercial activities.
Pakistani labourers in Saudia Arabia will get visa extensions, it was announced Wednesday. Saudi Minister for Manpower Abdullah Bin Naseer spoke to Special Assistant to the Prime Minister for Overseas Pakistanis, Zulfi Bukhari, on the matter. The entry and exit class visa will get an extension. Employees who lost their jobs will get their salaries and arrears cleared, Saudi officials assured the Pakistani authorities.
Saudi Arabia announced the suspension of taraweeh prayers during Ramazan at mosques and will only be performed at home. The suspension will not be lifted until the eradication of the coronavirus, according to a report in Al Riyadh. The Saudi Minister of Islamic Affairs, Dr Abdul Latif Al Sheikh mentioned that they ask Allah to accept their prayers whether held at homes or at mosques.
Saudi Arabia has told Pakistan not to prepare a Hajj agreement as the coronavirus continues to spread across the world. Saudi Arabia Hajj Minister Dr Saleh bin Taher Benten told the Pakistani government in a letter written on Thursday that there should be no agreement till the coronavirus situation is clear. He wrote that the Saudi government is taking measures to remain careful.