Downers Grove, IL: On Friday July 17th, 2015 Muslims from all over the Naperville and suburb areas joyfully bustled into the Ashyana Banquets to join the celebrations of Eid Ul-Fitr. While there were various venues that held Eid prayers throughout the region, the largest turnouts were at the Ashyana Banquets where arrangements for Eid prayers were made by the Islamic Center of Naperville (ICN) in three spells, at 8:30 am, at 10:00 am,And at 11:30 am. The Imam for the first session of the Eid prayers was Dr. Omar Hedroug, for second session,Mr. Rizwan Ali, and for the Third session, Dr. Wali Khan. Over 8000 devout Muslims, including Dr. Ausaf Sayeed, Consul General of India, with family, Mr. Aadil Farid, President, ICN, Mr. Ashfaq Hussain Syed, a committed social activist, Mr. Sami Siddiqi, Mr.Shoaib Khadri, Mr Zahyr Siddiqi, Dr Aqeel Mohiuddin, Dr Adil ahmed mohiuddin, Dr Kaleem Khan, Dr Muzafar, Mr Masood Quadri and prominent Businessmen,Professionals, and Community Leaders, attended the Eid prayers.
Women in vibrant colored dresses, men in ethnic outfits and children, smiling and laughing, filled the parking lots and poured into the Ashyana Banquets. Volunteers of the Eid Committee of the ICN open-heartedly welcomed the incoming persons so as to ensure that every one of them was able to partake in the Eid prayers,without any inconvenience. Despite the large numbers, the volunteers of the ICN, the Glenbard Security Inc,and the staff of the Ashyana Banquets were able to direct the crowds effortlessly and efficiently.
Imam and Residential Scholar of the ICN, Mufti Rizwan Ali, delivered an inspiring talk on the good deeds performed by the Muslims during the month of Ramadan and the generous rewards promised by Allah SWT to them. He stated that in the present day world, which is characterized by widespread immorality, the practice of giving and taking of interest, intake of intoxicants, etc., the Muslims, across the globe, engaged themselves in fasting, praying, and the reading of Qur’an. “This is, therefore, an occasion to rejoice and celebrate as Allah SWT has enabled us to be on the right path as shown by Him in the Holy Qur’an, despite multifarious distractions”, he added.
Dr. Ausaf Sayeed, the Consul General of India, while extending his warmest wishes to Muslims in the United States and around the world on the occasion of the Eid-ul-Fitr, stated that while Eid marks the completion of Ramadan, it is an occasion to celebrate the common values that reinforce the obligations that people of all faiths have towards each other. “Ramadan is not only a special occasion for fasting and praying but also a month-long rigorous training program for inculcating the values of discipline, patience, caring for the poor, and respect for the fellow beings, irrespective of caste, creed, and religion”, opined Dr. Ausaf Sayeed. He urged that the values learnt during the month of Ramadan should by diligently practiced throughout the year.
“Ramadan is simply about loving one another, offering friendship to fellow beings, and living in peace and harmony”, he added.
Mr. Aadil Farid, President, ICN, stated that the month of Ramadan is considered a blessed month in which the Holy Quran was revealed. He stated that the month of Ramadan is an occasion for spiritual uplifting, softeningthe heart and humbling oneself, sharing and caring, seeking forgiveness from Allah SWT, extending forgiveness to others, and seeking mercy of Allah SWT and praying for the same to others. “The ICN community, which comprises over 3500 families, representing India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Egypt, Jordan,Somalia, Iraq, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan and various other countries, addresses the needs of Muslims as well asthose who belong to other religions. ICN works very closely with people of other faiths to serve humanity, andencourages its members to follow the principles of Tolerance, Justice, Peace and Progress”, added Mr. AadilFarid.
“The sacred month of Ramadan is a time of sacrifice and reflection. Ramadan offers an opportunity to reaffirmour commitment to peace and justice through the power of faith. Ramadan reminds us that our common bonds far outweigh our differences. I wish everyone a blessed and meaningful Eid-ul-Fitr. I extend my warmest wishes to the Muslim community of Illinois on this occasion”, said Mr. Ashfaq Hussain Syed, a committed social activist.