The month of Ramadan has gone by rapidly this year leaving many Muslims spiritually rejuvenated and inspired by their deen. However, as soon as Eidul Fitr dawns, many forget the good deeds that were done during the holy month, drawing them back to their old habits and un-Islamic practices. Speaking to VOC’s Youth Hour, various young students within Cape Town spoke out about how Eid night has turned out to be, what they call – the ‘Eid after-party’.
“Eid night is not what it use to be like back in the days. Many youngsters are hanging out at malls, beaches and of course one of the main attractions for Eid- the V&A Waterfront. What do they do at the Waterfront? That’s what everyone wants to know,” said 19 year old Aneeqah Moerat from Grassy Park.
“I’ve seen many young Muslim girls who have been dressing up beautifully in hijab during Ramadan, but on the night of Eid – Ya Allah, short dresses, no hijab and hanging on guys in the open.” Gathering at these social hotpots on Eid night has all of a sudden become a norm for teenagers. Its where the ‘whose who’ of the popular Cape Town teen social circles meet.
“It’s a disgrace and many of the innocent Muslim youth are being influenced by youngsters who are not Allah conscious,” said Moerat. “A mall is a place you go to every day and we should leave it for another day. Eid is a special day and Muslim youth should spend it in a special way. You don’t need other people’s opinion on how you look..it’s not worth it.”
24 year old Yaseen Khereker said that Eid day should be considered as a holy day for Muslim youth and should be spent in the company of family. “My Eid day starts with the usual Eid salaah leading into the family lunch. When that’s done we go and greet family and friends. The night we will have supper and then the day is over,” he said.
“I still don’t see the need to go and party at night with friends at malls and beaches. It is so un-Islamic, especially on a day that we suppose to celebrate with family.” He added that youth should acknowledge that they have just come from a spiritually uplifting month and should continue their good practices to for a better living.
Imtiyaaz Hendricks, 20, pointed out that many of the youth start to slow down with their imaan and ibadah on the day of Eid. “In Ramadan we full of imaan and then when Eid comes we start falling away from it. It’s like a fan that turns and when we put it off – it slowly starts winding down. Some youth start falling away from good deeds and then go back to the wrong group of friends,” he said.
“My Eid day is spent like any other decent Muslim should spend it, starting with the early morning Eid salaah and then having breakfast, lunch and visiting family of both my parents side. We will go to the khubus (cemetery)and kramats and spend it like we should. So where does malls and beaches with friends fit in? It is so unnecessary and this is spoiling our youth’s identity,” added Hendricks.
“This is a huge problem and I believe that it should be looked at. We are not trying to make our Muslim youth look bad, but we are only trying to point out these things so that it can be avoided. What is more disgusting is to see Muslims drinking in bars at the Waterfront on Eid night. It is not on – it should really be pointed out to their parents. This is definitely not the way to start the next few months of your life,” said 27 year old Ashiq Uytenbogaardt.
Many parents are unaware of their children’s actions, which should be pointed out as soon as possible to avoid Muslim youth from practicing the wrong thing. “Parents need to know what’s happening in their children’s lives and need to at all times communicate to see that they don’t fall into a negative crowd. Many of our Muslim youth are falling away from Islamic practices because of the wrong crowds. So my suggestion to parents is start checking up on your kids and stop allowing them to do everything.” VOC (Aishah Cassiem)