Jakarta (ANTARA) - The Religious Affairs Ministry held the Semarak Ramadhan festival on Wednesday, which featured many activities ranging from a food bazaar and charity event for orphans to a free Eid al-Fitr exodus program.

"We are happy that the Religious Affairs Ministry can provide help for orphans and the poor, in accordance with President Joko Widodo's directive," Religious Affairs Minister Yaqut Cholil Qoumas remarked here on Wednesday.

The minister said that for this year's Ramadan month, the Semarak Ramadhan festival's food bazaar has involved micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) with halal-certified products.

The food bazaar is being held until April 13, 2023.

The Ramadhan bazaar, which offers low-priced products, is a manifestation of Islam's concept of social justice, he said. The concept emphasizes paying attention to the welfare of society comprehensively, including the underprivileged, he added.

In collaboration with the ministry's state apparatus' wives organization (DWP), assistance was symbolically provided to 100 orphans during a charity event held as part of the festival on Wednesday.

"There was also the distribution of staple goods. There have been 1,065 staple packages from the National Alms Agency (Baznas), Bank Mandiri, BRI (Bank Rakyat Indonesia), Bank Syariah Indonesia (BSI), and the ministry's DWP," Qoumas said.

The number of staple packages will continue to grow, and they will be distributed to security guards, cleaning service staff, and underprivileged communities, he added.

The ministry will hold the free Eid exodus program in collaboration with Islamic civil organizations, such as Nahdlatul Ulama and Muhammadiyah, as well as banks.

A total of 23 buses have been prepared for the free homecoming trip, which will begin on April 18. The free buses will take Eid travelers to several regions in West Java, Central Java, and East Java.

"As of now, there are already 23 buses. Insya Allah (God Willing), there will be more," he said.

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Translator: Asep F, Kenzu
Editor: Rahmad Nasution
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