KARACHI: Former chairman of Ruet-e-Hilal Committee Mufti Muneeb-ur-Rehman has raised objections on the decision to announce declaring Eid-ul-Fitr today on Thursday and asked the nation to observe one more fast as ‘Qaza Roza’.
While talking to the media in Karachi, President of Tanzeem-ul-Madaris and Chairman of Darul Uloom Naeemia Mufti Muneeb-ur-Rehman expressed displeasure on the decision of Ruet-e-Hilal Committee, saying that, ‘I have been crying all night over the decision.’
Mufti Muneeb said the Ruet-e-Hilal Committee was waiting for the crescent sighting confirmation from Mufti Shahabuddin Popalzai of Qasim Ali Khan Mosque, and as soon as they announced Eid, the committee did the same.
He appealed that Muslims must observe one fast more as ‘Roza Qaza’ (Delayed fast) and added that one-day Itikaf is also necessary to be observed.
Pakistan is celebrating Eid-ul-Fitr with religious zeal and fervour, but under strict lockdown due to the rising number of coronavirus infections. The late-night announcement took many Pakistani by surprise as the Ruet-e-Hilal Committee deliberated over four hours during a meeting in Islamabad chaired by Maulana Abdul Khabir Azad.
In a press conference, Azad said testimonies were received from Balochistan’s Chaman, Qila Saifullah, and Pasni, Peshawar in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Mirpurkhas in Sindh among other areas. Azad said the zonal committees in different cities did well to verify the testimonies before forwarding them to the central committee.
The chairman had stated his resolve to ensure that Eid is celebrated on the same day throughout Pakistan when he was appointed to the post. He wished everyone Eid-ul-Fitr Mubarak and urged people to observe safety precautions during Eid.
Prime Minister Imran Khan’s Special Representative for Interfaith Harmony Maulana Tahir Ashrafi said that the government had fulfilled its promise to the nation of celebrating Eid on the same day throughout the country.
Ashrafi added that the decisions on testimonies were made in accordance with Shariah. He said the entire nation will celebrate Eid together after 20 years.
The announcement was made after a long wait, at about 11:32 pm. The zonal committees in Sukkur, Lahore, Karachi and Quetta ended their meetings earlier in the evening, declaring that the moon could not be sighted in the three cities.
In Peshawar, the zonal RHC meeting was held at the Auqaf Hall under the chair of Maulana Ehsaan, the chief of the Peshawar zonal committee and went on longer.
A local, unofficial committee, headed by Shahabuddin Popalzai claimed, however, that it has received 189 testimonies from several areas including Mardan, Charsadda, Swabi and Kohat.
On the other hand, Sunni Tehreek chief Muhammad Sarwat Ijaz Qadri, Ameer of Jamaat-e-Ahl-e-Sunnat Karachi Allama Shah Abdul Haq Qadri, Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam leader Qari Muhammad Usman and Shakeel Qasmi of Jamiat Ulema-e-Pakistan have termed the sighting of Shawwal month as controversial.
Sarwat Ijaz Qadri, head of the Sunni Tehreek, said, “We will not tolerate the existence of this controversial Ruwit-e-Hilal Committee.” He demanded to dissolve the committee as soon as possible.
JUI leader Qazi Ahmad Noorani said that the announcement of the controversial sighting of the crescent was spreading confusion among the ulema and the people and under a conspiracy, the rites of Islam were being targeted. The government should play its role in alleviating the unrest among the Muslims, he said.