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J&K Grand Mufti says Ramzan moon not sighted, fasting to begin from Friday

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However, following crescent sighting in Pakistan, confusion galore in Kashmir; Taraweh offered in several mosques signalling fasting from Thursday

Srinagar: Muslims in India will begin fasting from Friday as the Ramzan moon was not sighted this evening, clerics said.

At a meeting of the Ruyat-e-Hilal Committee, Imarat-e-Sharaiyah-Hind held at 1, Bahadur Shah Zafar Marg here, it was announced that the moon has not been sighted in Delhi or in any other part of the country, a statement from Jamiat Ulema-e-Hind said.

The committee’s secretary Maulana Najeebullah Qasmi declared that the month of Ramzan will begin from March 24.

However, in Pakistan, Ruyat-e-Hilal Committee announced that Ramzan moon was sighted and the month of fasting will begin from Thursday.

Following the announcement by Ruyat-e-Hilal Committee Pakistan, around 10.30 in the night, there was complete confusion in Kashmir about the commencement of the Holy month.

While announcements were made from several mosques in Srinagar and other parts of Kashmir endorsing the commencement of Ramzan from Thursday, J&K’s Grand Mufti, Mufti Nasir-ul-Islam said that he stands by his decision as there was ‘no credible witness’ of crescent sighting from any territory in J&K.

He told GNS that the office had entrusted its men across all districts of Jammu and Kashmir to see if the crescent is observable at any place. Reiterating his earlier stance, Islam said they had in the evening received a ‘witness’ from Poonch, which after being put to scrutiny turned too feeble to enable us reach the decision about the start of Ramzan from tomorrow (Thursday).

“I stand by my decision as ‘no credible witness’ is on record from any territory in J&K and as such the holy month of Ramzan here (Jammu and Kashmir) will begin on coming Friday”, Islam added.

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