By: Nasser Kasozi
The Saudi Supreme Court has ruled that Wednesday will start the three-day festivities of Eid-ul-Fitr, which is a festival that marks the end of the holy month of Ramadan.
The ruling passed on Monday said this year’s Ramadan month will be 30 days after no one in the kingdom sighted the crescent moon on Monday evening.
It said the Supreme Court earlier called on Muslims in the kingdom to sight the crescent moon by naked eyes or through binoculars and to report to the nearest court and register their testimony for validation, should they see it on Monday evening.
The Higher Judiciary of KSA have announced that the ‘Eid of Fitr will be on Wednesday due to the moon not being sighted.
“Since there was no sighting of the crescent moon, the first day of the month of Shawwal in the Hijri calendar falls on Wednesday,” it concluded.
Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Kuwait have also declared Wednesday as the starting day of Eid through their official news agencies as well as Yemen, Indonesia, and the Philippines.
In Africa, the Ugandan Muslim Supreme Council has announced also on Monday that the moon has not been sighted therefore Eid-ul-fitr will be celebrated on Wednesday.
What is Eid-ul-Fitr?
Eid-ul-Fitr is the Festival of Fast-Breaking celebrated at the end of Ramadan or the first day of Shawwal, the month which follows Ramadan on the Islamic calendar. It is a joyous occasion with a strong religious significance.
During the last few days of Ramadan, each Muslim family gives a determined amount as a donation to the poor in the form of actual food to ensure that the needy can have a holiday meal and participate in the celebration.
On the day of Eid, Muslims attend a special prayer in the morning at outdoor locations or mosques. The prayer consists of a sermon followed by the short congregational prayer.
After the Eid prayer, Muslims visit friends and relatives, give gifts especially to children, and make phone calls to distant relatives to exchange greetings of “Eid mubarak” or “Blessed Eid”.
The celebration of Eid-ul-Fitr lasts for three days, although the main festivities occur on the first day of Prayer and on words.