Muslims had been praying in the wrong direction: According to media reports, people in a mosque had been praying in the wrong direction for four decades without realizing the fact until it was revealed by the newly appointed imam.
In the city of Sugoren, located in the country’s western Yalova province of Turkey a mosque had a major construction flaw due to which the Muslims who are instructed to bow their heads in the direction of Makkah in their prayers mistakenly misaligned themselves.
Confirmed by the Authorities: According to the reports of daily Sabah, the deviation from the original direction was around 33degrees. It was confirmed by the officials that when the mosque was constructed in 1981 and a mihrab was built in the wrong place, resulting in the misalignment of the direction.
Mr. Kaya decided that rather than demolishing the Masjid entirely, they would go for a temporary measure. He ordered placement of arrows made of white tape on the mosque carpet which will help to point people towards the right direction.
People appreciated the Imam: The imam in his interview with the Demiroren News Agency told that he has received a positive response from the people after the entire situation was explained to them. People also appreciated the solution.
As in Quran, it is stated that ‘Wherever you turn, there is the countenance of Allah (2:115).’ It is to be noted also that direction is determined by a 90-degree span and not at the exact angle of Kaaba.
Was it a completely wrong direction? Dr Baig added his views on the scenario and stated that it is clearly mentioned in Quran that ‘Turn your face in the direction of the Sacred Mosque’ (2:149) and a word shatar in this verse is explained as one of the four cardinal directions, due to which relaxation of 45 degrees is given in either side of the Kaaba.
Another aspect added is that the forehead should be facing the Kaaba. As in this particular case, the misalignment was of 33 degrees which are still in the limit of 45 degrees.
What should people do who were praying in the wrong direction? The lecturers have added to the situation that in an event of praying outside the range of the direction the complete scenario has to be taken into consideration.
According to them, if an effort was made to determine the direction of Kaaba with due diligence but later on it was revealed that the prayer direction was completely wrong the prayers will be counted as valid and one does not have to repeat it.
In this case, it was concluded that all the prayers that have already being prayed will not be considered invalid and hence not needed to be repeated. Also, the placement of the niche is not wrong but it can be repositioned so that it would exactly be facing the direction of the Kaaba in Makkah.