Ramadan 2021: Saudi Arabia, India, others that may begin fasts from Tuesday
Gearing up to strengthen their faith through prayer and increased recitation of the Quran, Muslims across the world are waiting on the edge to sight the crescent moon on Monday that will mark the onset of the Holy month of Ramadan. Islam follows the lunar or Hijri calendar which is based on the phases of the moon cycle and has 354 days unlike the solar or Georgian calendar that the rest of the world follows.
Hence, Ramadan is 10 or 11 days earlier every year and in 2021, it will begin from April 13 if the crescent moon is sighted on the evening of April 12 that is the 30th day of Sha’ban 1442 Hijri. Unable to sight the Ramadan crescent on April 11 after after Salat al Maghrib, the moon sighting committee in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia announced on Sunday evening that the first day of Ramadan will be on April 13, Tuesday.
Ramadan in countries like India, Pakistan and Bangladesh could overlap with Saudi Arabia if the moon is sighted on April 12 in these Asian nations. The UK has a body of Ulema that takes a call on the start of Ramadan and accordingly, the Wifaq ul Ulama UK has urged Muslims in Britain to attempt to sight the moon on the evening of Monday, April 12.
Here is the list of regions that will begin fasting from Tuesday, that is April 13, subject to the sighting of the crescent moon after the evening prayers on Monday:
1. Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
2. India, if the crescent moon is sighted on Monday evening after the maghrib prayers.
3. Pakistan’s Federal Minister for Science and Technology, Chaudhry Fawad Hussain, tweeted that the Ramadan crescent would most likely be visible on Wednesday April 13 in Lahore, Islamabad, Peshawar and other Pakistani cities. However, Pakistan too will look out for the moon on Monday evening that is April 12
4. Bangladesh, if the crescent moon is sighted on Monday evening after the maghrib prayers.
5. United Kingdom, if the crescent moon is sighted on Monday evening after the maghrib prayers.
6. Egypt’s Dar al-Ifta issued the religious edict that, “April 13 will be the first day of Ramadan.”
7. Lebanon’s top Sunni Muslim cleric, Grand Mufti Sheikh Abdellatif Deryan, confirmed that Ramadan and the first day of fasting will begin on Tuesday.
8. United Arab Emirates including Dubai and Abu Dhabi to follow Saudi Arabia’s sighting of the moon and begin fasting from Tuesday
9. Kuwait to follow Saudi Arabia’s sighting of the moon and begin fasting from Tuesday
10. Qatar to follow Saudi Arabia’s sighting of the moon and begin fasting from Tuesday
11. Bahrain to follow Saudi Arabia’s sighting of the moon and begin fasting from Tuesday
12. Oman to follow Saudi Arabia’s sighting of the moon and begin fasting from Tuesday
16. Sri Lanka
18. Germany relies on moon sighting reports of Saudi Arabia
19. France relies on moon sighting reports of Saudi Arabia
Ramadan fasting is one of the five pillars of Islam where observant Muslims refrain from eating and drinking from dawn to dusk and traditionally gather to break their fast with a date or khajur at iftar in the evening. Ramadan is also spelled Ramazan or Ramzan or Ramzaan when Muslims believe that God revealed the first verses of the Quran to the Prophet Muhammad.