Eid ul-Fitr 2020: Date and time of moon sighting in India
Eid ul-Fitr is celebrated as the end of the month-long fasting during the holy period of Ramadan or Ramzan when the Muslim community practice Roza (fasting in Islam). The ritual is performed by observing a sehri or suhoor before sunrise, and iftar after Maghrib post-sunset. This ritual is followed for a period of up to 30 days as Eid depends on the moon sighting which might occur on the 29th of 30th day of Ramzan.
The exact date and time of Eid ul-Fitr will be confirmed after the sighting of the crescent moon. The timings and dates differ in all countries, with Saudi Arabia starting the celebrations. The Hijri or Islamic calendar is determined by moon cycles, which last either 29 or 30 days. The presence of a new moon or the crescent moon signals the start of a new month.
Astronomers at the Majmaah University observatory near Riyadh, Saudi Arabia confirmed on Thursday that the crescent moon of Shawwal is unlikely to be sighted on Friday, Ramadan 29 (May 22, 2020).
Sources at the observatory said, “According to the scientific calculations that were published on the astronomical observatory site that sun will set at 6.39 pm at 293 degrees, and moon will set at 6.26 pm Friday, Ramadan 29, and this means the moon will set 13 minutes before the sunset. On Saturday, Ramadan 30, corresponding to May 23, the sun will set at 6.40 pm at 239 degrees, and crescent moon will set at 7.23 pm at 293 degrees, meaning that the crescent will stay on for 43 minutes after sunset at an altitude of 8.84 and elongation of 10.60.”
When is Eid ul-Fitr 2020 in India?
The moon will be much awaited on Saturday night, May 23 2020. If the moon is spotted tomorrow night in India, Eid ul-Fitr 2020 celebrations shall begin on Sunday, May 24 2020. Else, Eid will be celebrated in India on Monday, May 25 2020. The official calendar holiday for Eid is scheduled for Monday.
All about Eid ul-Fitr:
Eid ul-Fitr means ‘the festival of breaking the fast’ and it marks the end of Ramadan. Eid is not just a time for celebrations and feasts, but also a time when one remembers Allah and thank him for all his blessings he has bestowed upon us.
As one of the five pillars of Islam, charity or zakat is offered to the needy throughout Ramadan and also on Eid so that we get an opportunity to share our joys with others. Ramadan is a time for introspection, and gives us a spiritual opportunity to be closer to Allah.
During the fasts, Muslims abstain from eating, drinking, gossip, cursing, and are encouraged to focus on meditative acts like prayers, reading the Quran and engaging in noble acts such as charity.
The day also entails devotees dressed in new clothes, exchanging greetings by saying “Eid Mubarak”, which means “have a blessed Eid”, and distributing sweets. Children receive gifts and money from their elders which is called Eidi. The day is incomplete without a food spread containing a variety of delectable dishes including biryani, haleem, kebabs and desserts like seviyan and sheer khurma.