Yalda Night Celebration: Iranian People Hold Get-Together Despite Coronavirus Situation — President Hassan Rouhani Blames Citizens

Iran • Yaldā • Coronavirus • Iranian Peoples • Hassan Rouhani • Winter Solstice

Iranian families meet on Shab-E-Yalda [Yalda Night] every year to mark the “longest and darkest night of the year” (Winter Solstice). This festival corresponds to the night of December 20-21, according to the Gregorian calendar. Yalda Night is a time for Iranians to forget their struggles and everyday dilemmas and meet their older members of the family.

Iran • Yaldā • Coronavirus • Iranian Peoples • Hassan Rouhani • Winter Solstice
Yalda is a traditional celebration for Iranians to mark Winter Solstice (The smallest day of the year)

Families celebrate Yalda Night annually at the homes of their ancestors. Grandparents enthusiastically narrate nifty tales and read Hafez’s poetry, the most popular Iranian poet, until after midnight, in addition to consuming bananas, nuts, and traditional sweets. Indeed, Iranians symbolically celebrate the end of the dark and cold at Yalda Time, and get ready for the dawn of shades and life.

A typical dinner table at Yalda Night

The spread of the coronavirus robbed the Iranian people of this annual holiday this year. With about 190,000 Covid-19 deaths worldwide, it is prudent not to hold meetings and pose a danger to the lives of many people.

This is not exactly the first year, though, that Iranian families have been barred from celebrating Yalda Time. Indeed, given the economic failures of the government and terrible policies that have led many families below the poverty line, even though they wished to, the bulk of society is unable to organize such festivals and gatherings.

Iranian authorities also forbid the conducting of Yalda festivities by residents. Government-linked singers, musicians, and actors, in addition to government and state-run TV networks, alert people of the effects of packed crowds. President Hassan Rouhani, who still condemns the people, related the deaths of Covid-19 to the people for conducting ceremonies for Yalda.

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“This is while Rouhani himself in August promoted “crowded mourning ceremonies for Muharram. “We must hold ceremonies for Muharram in all areas of the country,” he said at the time. The coronavirus took the lives of many people after his catastrophic decision, which faced strong backlash from health practitioners, and Iran saw another Covid-19 high.

Several government-linked clerics, on the other hand, urged individuals to stop conducting Yalda gatherings in honor of mourning families. They did not, however, chat at Muharram about mourning families and potential losses, as they lined their pockets with cash gained by disturbing them.

In Iran, a widespread feeling is that the ayatollahs and their eulogists are the enemies of all peace and elegance of any sort. They have kept people in immense dilemmas for 41 years and relate the woes of the world to immigrants or people. They believe the spiritual blessings lie in weeping, and that tears can make the sins of people visible.

The people of Iran, however, see happiness and battling against the gloom and ruin of the dictators as the primary way to better their country, contrary to the obsolete thoughts advertised by the ayatollahs and mouthpieces. In this respect, by upholding the necessary protocols, Iranian people still rejoice this longest and darkest night, in contrast to the fundamental ayatollahs, who strive to spread the dust of death on civilization.

“There is hope even in hopelessness; there is light at the end of a dark night,” the Iranians recite the poem of Nezami, hoping for the triumph of light over the long darkness shadowing their land.

—Times Read

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