Muslims all over the world follow lunar calendar because lunar calendar is 10 to 12 days shorter than the solar calendar. So we are not able to say exactly that the dates of Eid-Ul-Fitr for year 2012 would be same as of year 2011.
Beginning of Eid-Ul-Fitr
The month of Ramadan is also decided by the sighting of moon which comes in the ninth month of Islamic Calendar; this sighting of crescent moon decides the beginning of Ramadan. If the crescent moon is sighted at night then it indicates that the next day would be the day of Fasting.
And if the crescent moon is sighted again at the end of Ramadan which is of 30 days, then it’s time to celebrate the Eid-Ul-Fitr (breaking the Fast).
Tips for sighting the Moon
There are number of factors which effects the visibility ratio of crescent moon so it is suggested that number of people should be involved in the sighting of crescent moon because naked eyes are involved in detecting the Eid-Ul-Fitr moon. Few factors which can affect the sighting of Eid-Ul-Fitr moon are as follows:-
- The distance between moon and Earth.
- Geographical condition also affects the sighting of moon.
- Variation in Wind direction and atmosphere is not clear.
- Good eyesight of observer is required.
The other concept of sighting is developed by Professor Ilyas by using ILDL (Concept of international lunar date. The procedure is that we form a curved line on the world map which divides the areas that have greater chances of sighting the moon in the starting of lunar month with the areas where crescent moon is most likely to be seen. The position is updated after every month to get accurate results from ILDL. Software is also developed name Mooncalc which uses the techniques of ILDL.