ECONOMYNEXT – Sri Lanka’s Muslims will celebrate the Eid-ul-Fitr festival on May 14 as the crescent moon, which marks the start of the tenth month of the Islamic calendar, was not sighted across the island today (12).
The month-long Ramadan fast will end at sunset on May 13, the All Ceylon Jamiyyathul Ulama (ACJU) said.
The ACJU Hilaal (crescent moon) division and the Department of Muslim Religious And Cultural Affairs unanimously declared that the month of Ramadan in the Islamic year 1442 will complete in 30 days, with the first day Shawwaal falling this Friday (14).
However, festival celebrations will be muted this year due to a spike in COVID-19 cases in the country and new travel restrictions which will go in to effect from Thursday.
Related: Sri Lanka to go into lockdown in all but name with stringent movement restrictions
The Muslim Religious and Cultural Affairs Department had already suspended all congregational activies and prayers in mosques on the advice of the health ministry. This includes Eid-ul-Fitr prayers.
Eid-ul-Fitr loosely translated means “the festival of breaking the fast”. It is a three-day celebration that takes place at the end of Ramadan fasting.
Ramadan is the ninth month of the 12-month Islamic lunar calendar.
It is considered one of the holiest months in the Islamic calendar. Muslims believe Allah revealed the first verse of the Quran, the holy book of Muslims, to Prophet Muhammed through the angel Gabriel in the month of Ramadan.
Muslims across the world will celebrate the festival on May 13. (Colombo/May12/2021)