New Delhi/Mumbai/Dhaka: Muslims in Pakistan and part of India including Jammu & Kashmir, Kerala, Bhatkal, Udupi, Mangalore and parts of Coastal Karnataka are celebrating Eid al Fitr today i.e. Wednesday July 06, 2016.
Rest of India and Bangladesh will celebrate the annual festival marking end of Ramadan on Thursday July 07, 2016.
The crescent of new Islamic month Shawwal-ul-Mukarram has been sighted in Pakistan and the Muslims will mark the festival of Eid-ul-Fitr on Wednesday (July 6), local media reported.
Central Ruet-e-Hilal Committee chairman Mufti Muneeb ur Rehman made a formal announcement to this effect at a press conference in Lahore.
He said that testimonies of moon sighting were received from across the country and that they were verified on the religious as well as legal grounds.
It is a rarest of rare case when Eid al-Fitr is celebrated in Pakistan and Jammu & Kashmir with Saudi Arabia and other Arab states.
As for Kerala, Bhatkal, Udupi, Mangalore and parts of Coastal Karnataka, Muslims in this part of India started observing Ramadan fast a day before, and hence Tuesday was 30th day of Ramadan in these cities. Accordingly, they celebrated Eid al-Fitr on Wednesday.
It was announced by various moon sighting committees in India and Bangladesh late Tuesday that Eid al-Fitr in these countries will be celebrated on Thursday as the moon of the Islamic calendar month of Shawwal has not been sighted today i.e. Tuesday corresdponding to 29th day of Ramadan.
The National Moon-Sighting Committee, Bangladesh announced the decision after a meeting at Islamic Foundation in Baitul Mukarram National Mosque on Tuesday.
Committee chief Religious Affairs Minister Matior Rahman told reporters in Dhaka that the panel’s seven divisional and 64 district offices failed to see the moon.
"There was no confirmed news of moon-sighting from the Met office, Islamic Foundation’s local offices, or the Space Research and Remote Sensing Organization", he added.
In India, Imarate Shariyah Bihar in a statement announced that since it did not receive any moon sighting confirmation it is decided that Wednesday July 06 will be 30th Ramadan and Thursday July 07, 2016 will be the first day of Eid al-Fitr.
Rooyat-e-Hilal Committee, Imarat-e-Shariah Hind, Jamiate Ulema, New Delhi, Jama Masjid Delhi and Markazi Rooyat-e-Hilal Committee, Mumbai also issued similar statements.
"Eid moon is not sighted anywhere in and around Delhi and other parts of the country. Hence it is declared that Wednesday will be the 30th day of Ramadan and Eid al Fitr will be celebrated on Thursday July 07, 2016", Muiziddun Ahmed, Secretary Rooyat-e-Hilal Committee, Imarat-e-Shariah Hind, Jamiate Ulema, New Delhi said in a statement.
"Moon is not sighted in Delhi, Assam, West Bengal, Madhya Pradesh, Bihar, Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan today on Tuesday. It is hence declared that Eid al Fitr will be celebrated on Thursday July 07", Syed Ahmed Bukhari, Shahi Imam and President of Markazi Rooyat-e-Hilal Committee, Jama Masjid, Delhi said, in a statement.
Maulana Kalbe Sadiq of Lucknow Chand Committee also said Eid al Fitr here will be celebrated on Thursday July 07, 2016.
Markazi Chand Committee, Farangi Mahal, Lucknow also issued similar statement.
Talking to ummid.com on phone, Mufti Mujahidul Islam Qasmi of Patna said, "We have so far not received any confrimed report of moon sighting from anywhere in the region."
Patna was the first to report moon sighting of Ramadan.
In Kolkata, Mufti Barkatullah said people in West Bengal have not reported moon sighting today i.e. Tuesday July 05.
"We will wait till 08:00 pm and then issue the official announcement", he said.
In Tamil Nadu, state Chief Kazi said Eid al Fitr will be celebrated on Thursday July 7, 2016.
"Moon is not sighted in Tamil Nadu. Hence Muslims will observe fast tomorrow and celebrate Eid al Fitr on Thursday July 7", he said in a statement.
Moon sighting reports have also not been received from Maharashtra, Andhra Pradeh, Telangana and Karnataka.
"We have so far not received any confirmed report of moon sighting", Khalid Mullah of ETV, Hyderabad said while talking to ummid.com on phone.
The Rooyat-e-Hilal Committees i.e. Moon Sighting Committees in New Delhi, Mumbai and other major cities in India held meetings Tuesday corresponding to 29th day of Ramadan after Maghrib prayers to verify and confirm if the new moon is sighted anywhere in the country.
Saudi Supreme Court and the moon sighting committees in the UAE, Qatar and other Arab states have already announced that Muslims in these countries will celebrate Eid al Fitr on Wednesday July 06, 2016. As the United States, United Kingdom, Canada and Euoropean countries rely on moon announcement by Saudi Arabia Royal Court, Muslims here also will celebrate Eid al Fitr with Arab states.
Elsewhere in the world, Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Japan, New Zealand and Australia have also declared Wednesday July 06 as the first day of Eid al Fitr.
The announcements were made by the moon sighting committees in the respective countries after they could not confirm sighting of the new moon in any part.
Ramadan, one of the five pillars of Islam, is sacred to Muslims because it is believed that the Holy Quran was revealed to Prophet Mohammed (peace be upon him) in this month. During this month, Muslims observe dawn to dusk fasting, and it ends with Eid al-Fitr festival.
Since the Islamic Calendar is Lunar based, a new month in the system is calculated by sighting of the crescent on 29th day of the ongoing month. If the crescent is sighted, the following day is counted as the first day of the new month. Else, it is treated as 30th day of the ongoing month and new month begins thereafter.
Meanwhile, the Supreme Court of India in a circular said Thursday July 7, 2016 will be a Gazetted holiday, instead of Wednesday. Haryana government too has taken a similar decision.