Ramadan in Dubai: Distributing meals without permit will result in $27,000 fine

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Dubai residents who plan to distribute Iftar meals during Ramadan this year have been advised to obtain a permit to avoid a hefty fine of 100,000 AED ($27,227).

The Department of Islamic Affairs and Charitable Activities in Dubai announced this during a press conference on Friday, citing the need to ensure the safety of donated meals.

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Ramadan is a significant month for the Muslim community, marked by fasting during daylight hours and ending with Iftar, the evening meal that breaks the fast. This year, it is expected to fall on March 22 or 23.

Muslims around the world gather to share Iftar meals, often donated by individuals, restaurants, or charitable organizations.

During the holy month, Muslims typically engage in acts of charity such as providing assistance to the underprivileged through the donation of food and funds.

Mohammed Mosabh Dahi, deputy director for charitable activities at the Department of Islamic Affairs and Charitable Activities, told local media that any person or institution distributing meals without a permit will be considered an unauthorized charitable act.

Violators will be subject to legal accountability, as stated in the decree regulating fundraising in the Emirate of Dubai for the year 2015.

The penalties for advertising or collecting donations without a license are between 5,000 AED and 100,000 AED, or a jail term of not less than a month and not over a year, or any of the two penalties.

To obtain a permit, people can get in touch with the department and provide information about the localities and date they plan to distribute meals. This will allow the authorities to guide others to different localities to distribute the Iftar meals safely.

The department has outlined the application process, which requires the following:

  • Emirates ID
  • Fill in the location of the distribution
  • Name and location of the restaurant from where the food is sourced

Applications can be submitted through the department's website or by calling 800600.

The decision to require permits for Iftar meal distribution is aimed at ensuring the safety of donated meals. The authorities have also stressed the importance of following the required rules on food distribution during Ramadan.

Ramadan is a month of spiritual reflection and devotion for Muslims around the world. Sharing Iftar meals is an important aspect of the holy month, and charitable acts are encouraged during this time. However, it is important to ensure that donated meals are safe for consumption, and obtaining a permit is a necessary step to achieve this goal.

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