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From Feb 1980 to Feb 2021

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The instructions that have been issued by the Ministry of Information were issued in the 1980s, which forbid hotels from holding parties, and banning singers and musicians to play in the hotels.

To implement the decision, a special department was formed in the Ministry of ‘Maulana Jalaluddin’. Its mission was to implement the ban, which contributed, indirectly, to strengthening the influence of clerics and spending more on their institutions, and the increase in the number of places of worship with the accompanying reaction, represented by the increase in the frequency of corruption in all its forms, and the increase in the consumption of the forbidden.

With time, the Ministry of ‘Maulana Jalaluddin’ showed some flexibility with hotels, and it decided to allow shows — only during Ramadan – when hotels were permitted to invite musicians to perform but no singing. The presence of the supervisors of the Ministry of Information was ridiculous, as almost everyone knew the reason for their presence; their absurd mission was to partake in the buffet for which they did not pay.

With time, the Ministry of ‘Maulana Jalaluddin’ allowed hotels to play the piano in the lobby after obtaining a monthly license renewable  automatically for eleven months, and in December it was renewed until the 23, so that hotels would not be able to play music after that date and these dates coincided with the Christian religious holidays

Days passed and those who refused even to allow them to hear music during their religious holidays will have the greatest credit for liberating us, treating us and saving us from every epidemic, but the decision to ban playing remains in effect until today.

I received a ‘WhatsApp’ message from a friend yesterday, which included a “video clip”, showing a European woman with blonde hair flowing on her shoulders, her fingers stroking a beautiful melody in a hotel lobby. The camera moves around to show the hotel is located in Riyadh, the capital of the sisterly Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, and the date is February 2021.

How long will we live this ridiculous and unjustified contradiction that has been going on for 40 years? How can this old behavior be separated with the new behavior of five deputies while they present an urgent proposal to the government, not to solve the housing problem or explain the financial distress but to increase the bonuses and rewards of the imams of mosques?

In the same context, the Ministry of Education has ended the services of music teachers because they played during private parties. It seems that the blatant Kuwaiti proverb, which says that ‘My father can have control only over my mother’, applies to this decision.

The Ministry knows very well that teachers of religion work in various charity societies, participate in religious courses, and give private lessons but it did not, of course, ‘dare’ to approach them, let alone think about ending their services.

e-mail: a.alsarraf@alqabas.com.kw

By Ahmad alsarraf

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