Abu Dhabi: In Ramadan, days are quieter and nights are bustling with activities in Abu Dhabi whereas in the older days, the situation was just the opposite when a small community resided in the capital.
Dr Qaiser Anis, 65, who has been residing in Abu Dhabi for 35 years, said, “I was 30 when I came to Abu Dhabi and at that time, there used to be a small community here, so no such giant iftar tents were set up around the city. Generally, people were breaking their fast in mosques; iftar meals also came from the homes of locals and expatriates.”
As the practice in Pakistan, most people broke their fast in mosques where big arrangements were made. Now, big iftar tents are also put up outside mosques, he said.
“Now things have changed in Abu Dhabi since the population of the city has ballooned, and we can find Ramadan tents everywhere for breaking fast. The most significant iftar arrangement is hosted at the Shaikh Zayed Grand Mosque where about 20,000 people break their fast each day.
“I have never seen such grand arrangements of free iftar anywhere in the world,” said Dr Anis who is the president of the Pakistan Business Professional Council in Abu Dhabi.
“I find Abu Dhabi the most comfortable and convenient place to stay and enjoy each and every occasion of the country. During Ramadan, many restaurants and shops remain open throughout the night and we can freely roam around to enjoy the nights,” he said. Thirty-five years back, after Taraweeh prayers, people mostly went back to their accommodation and homes because there were no such bazaars and food joints. Now markets are bustling throughout the night, Dr Anis said who belongs to Karachi in Pakistan.
He thanked the rulers for such a great living. He visits the graveyard of Shaikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan, Father of the Nation, on every 19th of Ramadan to offer prayers.