The Ministry of Awqaf and Religious Affairs launched the first official Holy Quran for the blind in Braille under the auspices of Her Excellency Dr Laila bint Ahmed al Najar, Minister of Social Development and Dr Mohammed bin Said al Maamari, Under-Secretary of the Ministry of Awqaf and Religious Affairs, at the Oman Exhibition and Convention Centre on Sunday.

Blind children are expected to make use of the book to learn, while elders can read on a daily basis.

The Sultanate of Oman has more than 26,000 blind people in the age brackets of 1 to 80, and the reasons are varied.

"Most of them are blind by birth, while others are due to road accidents or other diseases. The number comprises blind and people with blurred vision'', said the minister.

Individuals and corporates can sponsor the Holy Quran in Braille for the blind by getting in touch with the ministry and paying RO 200 for 30 books of 12x12 size. The ministry will make sure that the copies reach the deserving.

"We are happy to be associated with the Al Noor Association for the Blind and other authorities for an initiative like this which will help people read the Holy Quran through their digitorial extrimities'', said Dr Mohammed al Maamari, Under-Secretary at the Ministry of Awqaf and Religious Affairs.

There are Holy Quran editions in Braille, but most of them are oversized for children with special needs, and this is the first time that each of the 30 segments of the holy book are printed individually. They are printed in Jordan and transported by air to the Sultanate of Oman.

"Children would find it easy to carry, study and comprehend the Holy Quran in the present version, and that will help our children improve their Quran skills'', added Badriya al Wuhaibi, Head of Omar Bin Qattab School for the Blind.

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