First fast in Pakistan on Wednesday as Ramazan moon sighted – Pakistan

The Ruet-i-Hilal Committee announced on Tuesday evening that the Ramazan moon has been sighted and the first of the holy month will fall on Wednesday (tomorrow).

Addressing a press conference after a meeting of the committee in Peshawar, Central Ruet-i-Hilal Committee chairman Maulana Abdul Khabir Azad said the crescent was sighted in Karachi, Lahore, Malakand and other areas.

“The first day of fasting in Ramazan will be tomorrow, April 14, Wednesday,” he said.

Azad added that crowds in various areas of the country had spotted the moon.

He said the moon-sighting announcement made from Peshawar had sent a “message of unity” for the country, adding that the committee had held meetings with ulemas from across Pakistan to create consensus for three months.

“It is a moment of blessing that the entire nation will fast together,” he said.

In other countries, Muslims began marking Ramazan with communal prayers on Tuesday in a socially distanced contrast to the empty mosques of a year ago when the holy month coincided with the start of the coronavirus pandemic.

Covid-19 cases are spiking in Indonesia, the world’s most populous Muslim nation, but vaccines are being administered and the government is loosening restrictions. Mosques were allowed to open for Ramazan prayers with strict health protocols in place, and with malls and cafes open, passers-by could again see curtains shielding the sight of food from people fasting.

Neighbouring Muslim-majority Malaysia also eased its restrictions, including last year’s ban on Taraweeh and allowing popular open-air bazaars selling food, drinks and clothes.

More to follow.

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