A Ramadan under lockdown is not something I'll ever get used to. The lack of human interaction, the absence of communal iftars, the taraweeh at home and the general dearth of festivity during what is normally the most festive time of the year felt like a nightmare when it happened last year, and it still feels that way. What's worse is that if we don't maintain this lockdown, the same could happen to Eid this year! And I am not a man who's going to be okay with three consecutive Eids spent at home. It just doesn't sit right.
I do consider myself lucky in many ways, however. At least I am home with my family, in good-ish health. Thinking of those who have to live abroad without family, who are having to spend Ramadan truly alone, fills me with great sympathy.
And then there are people who have to observe Ramadan in financial distress, whose employers deny them their fair wages, who are denied their right to getting time off for iftar, or even their basic need of clean toilets. These are the people I feel truly sorry for, a feeling only surpassed by my disgust at the system that allows these problems to exist.
-- Azmin Azran, Sub-editor, SHOUT