Photographer Abdul Hameed is the Edge of Humanity Magazine contributor of this documentary photography. From the project ‘Shia Pilgrims Avoid Gatherings In Bahrain’. To see Abdul’s body of work, click on any image.
With Bahrain seeing an increase with Covid patients from the past 9 months, people have been waging war against the threat.
With no success on the vaccine, every government must find its own way to fight and avoid the pandemic.
As some countries still struggle to control the spread of covid-19, Bahrain has been praised for its efforts to handle the crisis. In this small island, precautionary measures were taken at an early stage while trying to not disturb the lifestyle of its residents.
According to September’ 09th report from World Health Organization, Bahrain had a total of 56,778 total cases and 202 deaths.
Bahrain announced the temporary closure of schools, restaurants, public and private sectors.
Gatherings of more than five people are banned, and people must wear masks in public or face a fine.
In an Arabic and Muslim country like Bahrain, Covid-19’s impact was amplified during Ramadan and Muharram. For Ashura commemorations in the Bahrain town of Manama many Shia Muslims gathered to mourn Husayn ibn Ali, also known as Imam Hussain, the 3rd Shia imam.
For the first 10 days of Muharram, the 1st month of Islamic New Year Shia mark Ashura, a time of spiritual and historical mourning commemorating the death of the Prophet Muhammad’s grandson Hussein at the battle of Karbala in 680.
The pilgrimage was expected to be one of the largest religious gatherings following the outbreak of the virus.
In such a sad ritual anyone can easily witness a crowd between two to three thousand Shia Muslims however; due to the lockdown about 25% of the Shia’s gathered this year.
Bahrain in general is a lively place and yes Covid has affected every single community especially the working expats who are the sole breadwinners in their family.
Streets which used to be active have now become like a warzone with very minimal people going out only when essential.
On this year in Bahrain Shia worshippers had called for all ceremonies to be broadcast live and for the faithful to pray at home or to wear masks and keep their distance if praying in public.
Covid-19 is challenging us as a country and as individuals in ways we have never imagined. But we should continue to be safe, respect the instruction and stay aware in order to help the government.
As in other parts of the world, people have accepted the new normal and have adapted to this lifestyle keeping in mind the safety measures and social distancing a necessity.
With expats men and women struggling to pay cuts and job losses, getting back to their respective countries is also becoming a challenge.
All images and text © Abdul hameed
By Abdul hameed
Abdul’s Previous Contribution To Edge Of Humanity Magazine
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