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World

Web Desk
May 17, 2018
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Christian expat gifts mosque to Muslim workers in UAE


DUBAI: A Christian businessman, Saji Cheriyan, who arrived in the UAE with just a few hundreds of dirhams in 2003, gifted a mosque to hundreds of Muslim workers this Ramadan.

Saji Cheriyan, 49, who hailed from India's Kerala, has gifted a mosque to Muslim workers ahead of Ramzan in the UAE, a media report said on Wednesday.

Reports, citing Christian expatriate, said he decided to build the mosque after he saw Muslim workers taking taxis to go to the nearest mosque to offer prayers.

“They have to spend at least 20 dirhams to go to Fujairah city or another industrial area to attend the Juma prayer in a mosque. So, I thought it will make them happy if I build a mosque here next to their accommodation,”  Cheriyan told media.

The mosque, built at a cost of Dh 1.3 million in the East Ville Real Estate complex in Al Hayl Industrial Area, can accommodate 250 worshipers at a time. Facilities for another 700 to pray in the interlocked courtyard of the mosque, which will be shaded by the time it opens, have also been arranged.

The construction began over a year ago. Now the mosque is all set to open with the full support of Awqaf in Fujairah. He has opted for the name Mariam for the mosque, after an Abu Dhabi mosque was renamed so in 2017.

As per report, The Awqaf officials were surprised and happy when they got to know Christian who wishes to build a mosque, offering him all the support like free electricity, water and other facilities.

Cheriyan, an Orthodox Christian by birth, had previously built a church for his parish in Dibba and also keeps the doors of a multipurpose hall in the East Ville Complex for various other groups of Christian believers to pray.


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