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May 16, 2021

Eid moon sighting controversy continues

KARACHI: The controversy over the Shawwal moon sighting continues as Pakistanis celebrate the second day of Eid.

The newest claim about the Shawwal moon has been made by Karachi University Space, Science and Technology Director Prof Dr Javed Iqbal.

He says according to astronomy, it was not possible to see the moon on May 12.

It was impossible to see the [Shawwal] moon even with a telescope, Dr Iqbal said, adding that the moon was not even likely to appear in Peshawar.

Prime Minister Imran Khan's Special Representative for Interfaith Harmony Maulana Tahir Ashrafi, on the other hand, while releasing a picture of the new moon Thursday evening, had said that the decision of the Ruet-e-Hilal Committee about Eid was correct.

He had said there was no need for anyone to observe a qaza fast.

His comments came in response to former Ruet-e-Hilal Committee chairperson Mufti Muneeb-ur-Rehman's statement in which he urged Muslims to observe a qaza fast in lieu of Ramadan 30.

Rehman had also asked those who observed aitkaaf to perform a qaza for that along with a fast, adding that he too would be fasting on Friday to make up for the missed roza. The sighting of the Shawwal moon was announced by the Ruet-e-Hilal Committee on the night of May 12 at 11:30 pm, after which a series of non-stop discussions over the issue started.