Want to start your own private Quran classes? With tightened laws by authority in UAE around such organisations, many who may want to impart religious knowledge to others and are qualified to do so, may not know the process due to the stringent laws in place. These rulings ensure regulation of religious texts, teachings and practices taking place across the country.Back in 2017, the Federal National Council passed a law that banned the practice of holding religious classes or Quran memorisation gatherings without any approval and licensing.

A year later, another law banned the practice of conduction religious lectures, Quran memorisation classes and other activities like collecting Zakat and distribution of books, leaflets etc. in mosques across the country without any license.

Apart from government centres for Quran memorisation, the UAE has permitted the opening of private centres too, by setting in place certain guidelines and procedures that must be followed.

What does the law prohibit?

As per the UAE's Federal Law No. (1) of 2018 Regarding Holy Quran Memorisation Private Centres, certain actions are deemed illegal if carried out within the premise of the private centre.

Individuals who may violate these laws will first receive a notification. After this, they will get a warning from the competent authority. If the individual does not follow the law despite the warning, their license will be suspended for a period of up to two months. If even after this, the individual does not comply with the law, then his/her's license will be revoked and cancelled. Depending on the severity of the case, the authority in charge might apply any one penalty or all in the above mentioned order.

In the case the act is committed on an administrative level, after a warning, the centre's license will be cancelled without any temporary suspension. Depending on the severity of the case, the competent authority might also have someone else temporarily manage the centre and/or close it permanently.

There is a hefty penalty of jail time for two months or more and a whopping fine of up to Dh50,000 for those who conduct Quran classes and religious lectures without obtaining any license by the competent authority.

Prohibited acts:

  • It is not allowed to collect donations and charity, including Zakat under the centre's name or inside its premises.
  • It is not permitted to conduct religious classes or lectures without the approval of the competent authority.
  • Owners, managers or teachers at the centre are not allowed to print books and publications related to the centre without approval from the required authority. Furthermore, they must not distribute any visual, audio and print publications without permission.
  • The centre must only be used for purposes it is intended for, such as teaching of the Quran, recitation, memorisation, and other religious sciences.

Who can teach?

Those who want to teach at a private Islamic centre or manage such an organisation need to fulfil the following requirements:

  • The applicant must be 21 years and above
  • They must pass the test and interview required by the centre
  • They must have the required practical experience and qualifications
  • They shall have proof of good conduct
  • If the applicant has not been sponsored by the centre of employment then he/she should obtain the approval of competent authorities
  • Applicants must pass the health fitness requirements for their work
  • They should not have previously been sentenced for any felony or misdemeanour that violates honour or trust. There can be an exception in the case that they have been rehabilitated.

Who can open private centres?

In order for residents to establish a private Islamic centre and obtain a license to open such centres, they must fulfil the following requirements:

  • The applicant must not be less than 21 years of age
  • They shall be a citizen of the UAE
  • They should have a certificate of good conduct
  • They should have the necessary financial solvency
  • The applicant should not have been sentenced previously to any felony or misdemeanour that violates honour or trust. There can be an exception in the case that they have been rehabilitated.

To open a centre in the Emirates or for any expansion plans to other branches, individuals must make sure they are following all of the guidelines listed by the authority. These are:

  • Obtaining a proper license
  • The building where classes are being held must fulfil all technical and health requirements.
  • There should be separate classrooms for different genders.
  • Students must be provided with necessary equipment needed to carry out the course.
  • Students must have halls and areas to carry out activities taught during the duration of classes.

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