Mosque bans fidget toy during prayers
A mosque is the latest to join the list of institutions banning fidget spinners.
The imam of Masjid e Umar in Mount Roskill announced the popular toy was not allowed inside the mosque before the start of a special one-hour evening prayer for Ramadan, the Islamic month of fasting that began for Kiwi Muslims on May 28.
The mosque committee declined to comment, but one representative said the decision was in line with the mosque’s policy around other devices.
‘‘This fidget spinner announcement is a non-event really. We do not allow people to use other devices inside the mosque. It’s a respect thing.’’
He said the mosque was no different from a number of schools that had banned the popular toy.
New Zealand Muslim Association said children were not allowed to bring toys and gadgets to the mosque and this included fidget spinners. For regular mosque-goer Irfan Baig, this was good news.
He went to the Masjid e Umar daily with his nine-year-old son Rehan Baig. He said there could be up to 80 kids at the mosque and while hundreds of adults prayed in the front, children snuck to the back and had ‘‘competitions’’ with their fidget spinners.
Children competed against each other to see who could rotate the the ball-bearing devices fastest or who knew most fidget spinner tricks.
Some fidget spinners even had flashing lights. Baig said the hour-long evening prayer was a time for quiet reflection.
Fidget spinners were orig- inally marketed as a stressrelieving device and had a bearing in the centre with three prongs.
His nine-year-old son said three new fidget spinners, that his uncle had ordered as a gift, were on their way from the United Kingdom.
But Rehan understood why the imam had prohibited fidget spinners at the mosque.
‘‘We are there to pray not play and it is insulting to use fidget spinners in the mosque,’’ he said.
Baig said he had no issues with his son buying into the new craze, as long as he followed the rules and the toy did not get in the way of his school work.
Masjid e Umar’s representative said he had not seen any gadgets, including fidget spinners, since the announcement.
Rehan Baig, front, with his fidget spinner as parents Irfan Baig, left, and Ayesha Baig look on.