This year again we had a disputed Eid in Europe. My question is what should be done is such a situation.
We live in a European country where Turks and Arabs are the two main dominant Muslim communities. This year (2005) Turks started fasting from 5th of October whereas the Arabs observed 4th October as the first day of Ramadan with Saudia. Regarding Eid, as per the scientific information from different sources, there was no chance that the moon could have been sighted on 2nd November in Europe. The local Arab community had their Eid on 3rd November after completing 30 fasts. However, even the local Turkish community announced Eid on 3rd November. Surprisingly the announcement of Eid was made well before the last fasting day which suggests that moon sighting was not a criterion rather the lunar calendar was the criteria. The Ulema Counicl in UK, based on moon sighting reports announced Eid on 4th November. Keeping in view this situation please answer the following questions. 1. Is it allowed that in such circumstances we do not join the main Muslim communities and follow what is right and celebrate Eid on our own? 2. Do we have to fast for one more day? 3. Few Muslims here do not celebrate Eid with either of the two communities because of this situation. They argue that fasting is Fard whereas praying Eid is Wajib so they would rather fast instead of celebrating Eid that is disputed. Is this the correct practice?
The Hadith is clear, fasting and celebration of Eid is based on the sighting of the moon and not on any predetermined scientific calculations:
1. Follow your local ulama of Haqq.
2. If the total was less than 29 days, you are obliged to fast for one more day.
3. The sighting of the moon is the criterion to determine this and not such logical reasoning.
And Allah Ta’ala Knows Best
Mufti Muhammad Kadwa
CHECKED & APPROVED: Mufti Ebrahim Desai (Fatwa Dept.)