THERE was great pride among Oxford’s Muslim community yesterday as the total raised for the Pakistan floods topped £30,000.

The cash was raised in just a matter of weeks and has staggered senior figures in the community.

Appeals were made during prayers at the Central Mosque in Manzil Way, the Madinah Mosque in Stanley Road and the Bangladesh Mosque in Cowley Road.

At the Central Mosque, 2,000 worshippers have donated more than £18,000 since the floods hit a month ago.

And it wasn’t just people of Pakistani origin who were giving their money.

Chief Imam Munir Chishti said: “About 50 per cent of the worshippers here are not from Pakistan, but places like Africa and the Middle East.

“And yet they are all giving what they can, and some giving more than they can afford because this is a question of humanity. It makes me very proud of everyone here.”

On Sunday, a cheque was presented by representatives of the mosque, including chairman Fazal Hussain, to two charities – the Minhaj Welfare Foundation and Edhi Welfare, which are working in the flood-stricken region.

Aftab Baig, a worshipper at the mosque, said the charities had been chosen for their good reputation.

He said: “General Council members at the Central Mosque chose them because of the work they are doing in Pakistan.

“This is Ramadan, so Muslims give a certain part of their income to charity.

“It is all being sent to the people who need it.”

Mr Baig said the money was raised over three successive Friday prayers and was in addition to money collected at other mosques.

At the Madinah Mosque, another £4,000 has now been raised on top of the £11,000 already sent out to Pakistan.

Their money is being raised for a team of volunteers – including Oxford-based businessman Shaquat Quershi – who are delivering aid in Pakistan.

The floods have so far claimed more than 1,600 lives and directly affected about 17 million people.

Deputy chairman of theCentral Mosque committee Mahmud Khan Hassat said: “The Pakistan people are resiliant and I am sure they will bounce back soon.

“We can only pray to Allah to help and continue to make our small contributions to such a big calamity. If we can afford to do it, then we should be doing it. It is our duty.”