Kabul –14th June 2016
The 9th annual Quran recitation contest, organized by Etisalat, came to an end on 13th June. To mark the closing of the contest, a ceremony was held in Kabul and was attended by dignitaries from ministry of Hajj and Islamic affairs, VIPs from Afghanistan government, MPs, Etisalat and Shamshad TV management, media representatives, friends and families of participants.
Speaking on the closing ceremony, Dr. Salah Zerguerras, CEO of Etisalat Afghanistan said, 'We give a significant priority to Islamic culture and has always considered promoting and sponsoring programs that will help strengthen Islamic culture amongst the people of Afghanistan, especially amongst the youth.’
Dr. Salah congratulated the winners of the contest and presented them with certificates and cash prizes. He also wished the people of Afghanistan a blissful holy month of Ramadan.
The yearly contest is organized by Etisalat to mark the beginning of the holy month of Ramadan and to promote Islamic values among youths.
‘As an Islamic company, Etisalat has always served Afghans and promoted cultural values within Afghanistan. Etisalat Quran contest helps encourage more people to read, understand and spread the message of Allah`s book which is peace and humanity.’ said Qari Barakatullah Saleem.
Ahmad Shah, winner of the first position said, ‘On behalf of all the participants, I would like to thank Etisalat for organizing these annual contests and giving us this big platform to exhibit our skills, learn from each other`s experience and meet our fellow Qaris from across Afghanistan. We ask other private business to support the same causes so that the young generation should have access to educational programs.’
According to program format, preliminary selection round starts in all zones concurrently and once the participants qualify for the next rounds, they come to Kabul to compete for the title of ‘Best Qari’.
The event is projected as the biggest such show ever in Afghanistan's recent history, and is believed to play a role in bringing Afghan youth closer to their rich heritage. The contestants are judged based on memorization, Tajweed rules and melodic recitation of the Holly Quran. At the end of the contest, top five Qaries receive certificates along with cash prizes.
Etisalat first launched Quran contest in 2008 which turned into one of the most watched TV program in the country. Etisalat annual Quran contest, hosts a huge number of youths from across Afghanistan every year.
The contest has proved to be very useful in introducing top reciters to Afghan society, as the winners of previous seasons were able to represent Afghanistan in Dubai International Quran Competition in UAE.