Ramadan 2020: 'Caring for the needy in tough times'

Ramadan, UAE, covid-19

Zainul A Khatani, a pilot with Emirates, and his family have adopted charity as a regular life practice.


Ismail Sebugwaawo

Published: Sat 16 May 2020, 7:15 AM

Last updated: Sat 16 May 2020, 9:20 AM

Ramadan is about charity and caring for the needy for the family of Zainul A Khatani, a young flight pilot in UAE.
And with the current Covid-19 crisis that has affected many people across the globe, the family said it has realised the importance of extending support to many poor and needy people than donating all their charity to just one or two needy families.
Khatani, a pilot with Emirates Airline on A380, said during the past years' holy months of Ramadan, his family's target was to give out their Zakat or any other forms of charity to one or two families. This has been through supporting a family with everything, including establishing a sustainable small business, paying their kids' school fees for a full year and getting their medical insurance covered.
The aim was that the family becomes Zakat donors by next or consequent years, said Khatani.
"But this Ramadan, we decided to distribute our Zakat to as many places as we can so that it reaches out to many poor and needy people. We realised it was important," said the 30-year-old Indian national who stays in Dubai Land with his wife and their seven-month-old boy.
"We have donated to the 10 million meals initiative, given survival kits for refugees in different countries and contributed for support hospitals at isolated places and people's education."
Khatani came to Dubai in January 2019 and last year was the family's first Ramadan in UAE. "My wife was pregnant, so we prayed Taraweeh prayers from different mosques in Dubai, Abu dhabi and Sharjah last year. We had a great quality time by those amazingly mesmerising recitation of Quran from different Qaris (Imaams) who come from different parts of the world," said Khatani.
"But this time, we can't enjoy that as mosques are closed because of the current Covid-19 situation. This Ramadan, I lead my wife in the Taraweeh prayer at home. Our seven-month-old son, Muhammad, usually joins us and jumps on to his mum's shoulder with his toys."
"Last year, I used to fly to different places and the Iftar timings were quite different. And on my day offs, I and my wife could go to different restaurants in Dubai for Iftar and Suhoor meals," said Khatani, adding that this year the family have their Iftar meals at home.
"This pandemic has taught us patience and the importance of giving and sharing whatever we have with others."

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