Islamic New Year: When is Muharram 2024 in India? Saudi Arabia announces first day - Hindustan Times
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Islamic New Year: When is Muharram 2024 in India? Saudi Arabia announces first day

ByZarafshan Shiraz, New Delhi
Jul 07, 2024 08:46 AM IST

Muharram 2024: Here's all you need to know about when Muslims in India celebrate Islamic New Year as Saudi Arabia announces first day of Al Hijri 1446

The Islamic calendar is based on the lunar cycle or phases of the moon hence, the dates of Muharram vary each year in the Gregorian calendar and South Asian countries like India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia etc usually sight the crescent moon a day later than Saudi Arabia, UAE, Oman other Gulf countries, USA, UK and Canada. For the uninitiated, Muharram is the first month of the Islamic lunar calendar hence, the first day of this holy month is known as the Islamic New Year, Al Hijri or Arabic New Year but apart from the New Year celebrations, the month of Muharram holds great historical significance for both Shia and Sunni Muslims around the globe.

Islamic New Year: When is Muharram 2024 in India? Saudi Arabia announces first day (Photo by KLM Axiva)
Islamic New Year: When is Muharram 2024 in India? Saudi Arabia announces first day (Photo by KLM Axiva)

Unlike the Gregorian calendar that consists of 365 days, Islamic calendar has about 354 days divided into 12 months where Muharram is followed by the months of Safar, Rabi-al-Thani, Jumada al-Awwal, Jumada ath-Thaniyah, Rajab, Shaban, Ramadan, Shawwal, Zil-Qadah and Zil-Hijjah. After Ramadan or Ramzan, Muharram is considered to be the most sacred month in Islam and it marks the beginning of the lunar calendar which Islam follows.

Saudi Arabia announces the first day of Muharram

The crescent moon for Muharram was not sighted in Saudi Arabia on Friday evening i.e. July 05, 2024 which was the 29th day of Dhul Hijjah month. Hence, the authorities in Saudi Arabia announced that the 1st of Muharram 1446 will commence after maghrib or evening prayers on Saturday July 06, 2024. According to Gregorian calendar, July 07, 2024 will be the first day of Muharram in Saudi Arabia, marking the start of the Islamic new year 1446.

When is Muharram in India?

Since Saudi Arabia will mark the first day of the Islamic New Year on July 07, 2024, India will gear up to sight the crescent moon of the holy month of Muharram tonight. If the crescent moon is sighted after Maghrib on July 06, 2024, the first day of Muharram will fall on July 07 otherwise, July 07 will be the last day of Dhul Hijjah 1445 and Islamic New Year 1446 will be celebrated by the Muslims in our country on July 08, 2024.

Muharram marks the beginning of the Islamic New Year, signifying a time of renewal and spiritual contemplation. The word Muharram means ‘not permitted’ or ‘forbidden’ hence, Muslims are prohibited from taking part in activities like warfare and use it as a period of prayer and reflection.

However, Muharram is also a month of mourning and reflection for Muslims. It serves as a reminder of the sacrifices made by Imam Hussein and his companions, highlighting principles of justice, bravery and standing up against oppression.

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