Saturday, 26 July 2014

Crescent Observation Predictions For Shawwal 1435 AH (2014 AD)

Another Eid al-Fitr is around the corner and so is lunar confusion. But need one confuse things given the very clear scientific data below? Beware: no amount of science can cover the flaws of human observation, cloudy weather or extreme geographical locations.

The lunar calendar will always remain a necessity for determining occasions such as Ramadan, Hajj (pilgrimage at Makkah) and the two Eid festivals. At this time, we need not dive into an oily kingdom’s preference for unsettled crescent observation criteria. The onus of responsibility clearly falls on those who falsely report crescent sightings or support outright liars. This institutional wrong means that Muslims could end up starting the holy month of Ramadan (fasting) and celebrating Eid on the wrong dates.

The idea behind writing about lunar astronomy is to help one look with precision at the sky. Astronomy must be studied by each Muslim, as was done during the zenith of Muslim rule, to appreciate the inner workings of God's System. Observation matters need not be left to the experts; even novices can enjoy watching the sky in order to fulfil God’s Will and the sunnah (practices of Prophet Muhammad, peace on him).

A simultaneous global sighting of the crescent is an astronomical impossibility due to the moon’s eccentric rotation and orbital behaviour. Hence, celebrating Eid on a single day across a huge land mass (USA, China, India) is not a religious requirement but rather a new age idea propounded by the religious globalists. It has now become a fitna (trial, tribulation), frequently leading to disagreements and discord; please ignore this effort designed to divide Muslims further on non-issues.

A few important points need to be borne in mind this time:

  1. The birth of the new moon (conjunction) will take place on 26 July 2014 at 23:42 UTC (03:42 on 27 July 2014, Pakistan Standard Time).
  2. On the 27th, the moon will set 00:01 minute AFTER sunset. This will only leave us with 00:01 minute (of lag) during which, because of the 8 degrees below the horizon angle, the crescent will NOT be visible at Lahore. But on the 28th, the lag will be a comfortable 00:37 minutes and the crescent’s angle above the horizon will be approximately 7 degrees.
  3. At Lahore, we will clearly observe a rather 'fat' crescent (00:39 hours old) on the 28th, therefore, in Pakistan Eid al-Fitr will fall on Tuesday, 29 July 2014.
I thank Allah and remain indebted to my astronomer friends whose accurate predictive software programmes and research have lit up my path of lunar astronomy.

I welcome your questions and comments on this important subject, and hope that you will attempt to not only understand what I have provided here but also help others understand matters for their own good.

Once you wish to be guided by taking a few essential steps in the direction, Allah's Promise will come true: you will be protected and guided.

They will ask thee about the new moons. Say: "They indicate the periods for [various doings of] mankind, including the pilgrimage." (Qur’an 2:189)

Now click on the graphics to enlarge the images:
Jeddah (27 July 2014)

Jeddah, SAUDI ARABIA (Sunday 27 July, 2014)
Sunset:  19:05 LT
Moonset: 19:17 LT
Moon Age:   +17H 23M
Moon Lag Time: +00H 12M
Moon Altitude: +02°:35':38"
Moon Azimuth: +282°:27':20"
Distance: 406,487 Km
Crescent Visibility: Not Visible Even With Optical Aid

Peshawar, PAKISTAN (Sunday 27 July, 2014)
Sunset: 19:23 LT
Moonset: 19:22 LT
Moon Age: +15H 41M
Moon Lag Time: +00H 00M
Moon Altitude: -00°:41':54"
Moon Azimuth: +285°:55':10"
Distance: 406,462 Km
Crescent Visibility: Not Visible Even With Optical Aid

Pakistan (27 July 2014)
Karachi, Pakistan (Sunday 27 July, 2014)
Sunset: 19:19 LT
Moonset: 19:25 LT
Moon Age: +15H 37M
Moon Lag Time: +00H 06M
Moon Altitude: +01°:30':33"
Moon Azimuth: +283°:21':57"
Distance: 406,461 Km
Crescent Visibility: Not Visible Even With Optical Aid

Lahore, PAKISTAN (Sunday 27 July, 2014)
Sunset:  19:05 LT
Moonset: 19:06 LT
Moon Age:  15H 23M
Moon Lag Time: 00H 01M
Moon Altitude: -00°:08':48"
Moon Azimuth: +285°:08':04"
Distance: 406,457 Km
Crescent Visibility: Not Visible Even With Optical Aid

Lahore, PAKISTAN (Monday 28 July, 2014)
Pakistan (28 July 2014)
Sunset: 19:18 LT             
Moonset: 20:03 LT
Moon Age: +39H 37M
Moon Lag Time: +00H 44M
Moon Altitude: +09°:50':34"
Moon Azimuth: +276°:08':07"
Distance: 406,492 Km
Crescent Visibility: Easily Visible By Naked Eye

London, United kingdom (Sunday 28 July, 2014)
London (28 July 2014)
Sunset: 20:57 LT
Moonset: 21:09 LT
Moon Age:  +45H 15M
Moon Lag Time: 00H 13M
Moon Altitude: 01°:44':30"
Moon Azimuth: +282°:04':03"
Distance: 406,394 Km
Crescent Visibility: The Crescent Visibility is: Visible With Optical Aid Only

BREAKING NEWS (27 July 2014)
For more details visit

  1. Seen: Dr. Muhammad Hafiz (MCW member) reported sightings in Buenos Aires, Argentina: Br. Fuad Musa from Santiago, Chile reported his group tried to observe the Hilaal for Shawwal 1435 AH on July 27 in Northern Chile but was not successful.
    Br. Fuad Musa stated the Hilaal was observed in Argentina by four Muslims whose sighting on July 27 was confirmed by the Sheikh in Buenos Aires. I contacted Sheikh Faizal Marjel in Buenos Aires and he stated the 4 Muslims are from his Masjid who fasted the month of Ramadan and are trust worthy. He spoke to the four of them personally about the positive Hilaal sighting for Shawwal 1435 AH and he is satisfied. He stated in addition to those four sighting from his community in Buenos Aires there were other reported sighting in Argentina from other Muslims. He stated other Masjids in Brazil and Paraguay that he has contact with, did not see the Hilaal thus they will be using the positive Hilaal sighting from Argentina for their Eid Ul Fitir celebration tomorrow.
Saudi Arabia:
  1. Not Seen: Sheik A.A. Ishola (MCW member) from Makkah reported: Alihamudulilahi I was at the AlBayrouny Observatory in Mecca this evening accompanied with Ustaz Saheed Ganiyu Daramola and Engr. Nasiru Oluyemo the Moon was not seen due to total cloud. And before we left the place we got the information that it has been seen in Sudair (near Riyadh) and Shaqra (near Riyadh). Comment by Sunset in Sudair, Saudi Arabia was at 6:40 pm, while moonset was at 6:49 pm; So, it is clear to us that moon cannot be seen in 9 minutes. What they saw could not be the moon
  2. Announced: Najeeb Qasmi from Saudi Arabia reported: In Saudi Arabia Eid will be celebrated tomorrow, Monday 28 July 2014 as the Saudi Court has announced that the crescent of Eid has been sighted - No info of sighting was provided.
    Seen: Muhammad Sohail (MCW member) from Iquique reported: In Iquique Chile we tried to see the moon on Sunday 27/07/2014. In four gruops of four people each tried to observe the moon but only one group of four saw the moon and on shahadat of this group (of four men), it was decided to have Eid on Monday, July 28. In my group we started observing at 18:30 upto 19:05. Sky was well clear, but unfortunatlly we couldn't see the moon in our group.
Polynesian Islands:
  1. Seen: reported:
    Naked eye sighting
    How many persons? : Two people (two separate photos)
    Name of the Photographers : Eric Gauducheau and Francisca Yang
    Location of the observer : Mahina, French Polynesia ( Long: 149°2'31.7'' W : Lat: 17°3' 39.7'' S - altitude 600m )
    Condition of the western Sky : A little cloudy
    Time and date of first sighting of the crescent moon : 27/07/2014 - 18 h 19
    Orientation of the "horns": horizontal position
  2. Seen with Binoculars, Photo taken by telephoto lens 300 mm: reported:
    How many persons? : Alone
    Name of the Photographers : Santallo Roland
    Location of the observer : Faaa, Tahiti , French Polynesia ( Long: 149°35'15.93'' W : Lat: 17°33'4.91'' S - 100m )
    Condition of the western Sky : Clear , 70%
    Time and date with day of the week of local sunset : 27/07/2014 - 17 h 44
    Time and date of first sighting of the crescent moon : 27/07/2014 - 18 h 10
    Time of last sighting of the crescent moon : 27/07/2014 18 h 30 (cloudy)
    Approximate "height" in degrees of the crescent moon above the local horizon : El 3°: 22': 45" AZ 282°: 52' 08" at the time of picture
    Approximate horizontal distance in degrees of the crescent moon from the Sun : 4°: 14'
    Orientation of each of the "horns": 3 to 7 O'clock 
    Announced: Muhammad Imran Paracha (MCW member) from Doha reported: Ministry of Awqaf Religious Affairs - Qatar had announced that Monday July 28, 2014 shall be Eid Al Fitr. They have not mentioned any sighting report or whether this decision is based on the Saudi announcement.
South Africa:
  1. Seen: Mahmood (Bhaai) Cassim (MCW member) from Johannesburg reported: On Sunday 27 July 2014, I and my 25 year old daughter saw the moonat 5:56 pm approximately in Northcliff, Johannesburg. Weather was cold; Sky was clear, turning red near horizon. At first it appeared as a star, with just a tiny dot visible. This gradually increased in intensity. As we continued observing, the "star" spread sideways creating a line almost parallel to the horizon; and the view lasted for about two minutes. The position was to the left of where the sun had already set. When my daughter reached out for her camera to take a photograph, we looked up and within a few seconds it had disappeared. As we expressed our amazement, the same bright "line" suddenly reappeared but the intensity was about four times brighter, but this time lasted for just about four or five seconds. It was not an aeroplane as the position did not change. Comment by We have contacted all our MCW members in South Africa, and most of them reported that skies were clear and no sighting committe could see the moon, so this claim of sighting is questionable
  1. Announced: Gabriel Jairodín Riaza (MCW member) from Madrid reported: The Union of Islamic Communities of Spain (, Islamic Commission of Spain, announces that Monday, July 28, 2014, is the first day of Shawwal 1435 and Eid ul-Fitr.
    Announcement: Vincent Mariani from Tunisia reported: Tunisian mufti just announced Aid el Fitr monday 28 July too. Aidek Mabrouk ??
  1. Not Seen, but accepted South Africa sighting: Ayub Mahomed (MCW member) from Harare reported: Moon not sighted in Zimbabwe but based on sightings in South Africa Eid will be celebrated on Monday 28 July 2014.

The OFFICIAL first day of Shawaal 1435 AH in different countries

27 July 2014
  1. Hijri Committee of India, a small minority in India (The day after conjunction is the first day of the month)
  2. Nigeria (Announced based on mistaken claims of sighting)
28 July 2014
  1. Afghanistan (Follow Saudi)
  2. Albania (Follow Saudi)
  3. Algeria (Follow Saudi)
  4. Armenia (Follow Saudi)
  5. Austria (Follow Saudi)
  6. Azerbaijan (Follow Saudi)
  7. Bahrain (Follow Saudi)
  8. Bangladesh (Some areas follow Saudi)
  9. Barbados (Local Sighting)
  10. Belgium (Follow Saudi)
  11. Bolivia (Follow Saudi)
  12. Bosnia and Hercegovina (Follow Turkey)
  13. Bulgaria (Follow Saudi)
  14. Canada (FCNA/ISNA - Fiqh Council of North America/Islamic Society of North America)
  15. Chechnia (Follow Saudi)
  16. Chile (Local Sighting)
  17. China (Majority Follow
  18. Cosovo (Follow Turkey)
  19. Croatia (Follow Turkey)
  20. Denmark (Follow Saudi)
  21. Egypt - Moon Born before sunset & moon sets at least 5 minutes after sunset
  22. Fiji Islands (Late change of decision by Fiji Muslim League)
  23. Finland (Follow Saudi)
  24. France (Union des organisations islamiques de France) [also CFCM (Conseil français du culte musulman)]
  25. Georgia (Follow Saudi)
  26. Guyana (Accepted Chile sighting)
  27. Hungary (Follow Saudi)
  28. Iceland (Follow Saudi)
  29. Indonesia (Claims of Sighting - Official Announcement)
  30. Iraq (Sunnis Follow Saudi)
  31. Ireland (ECFR - European Council for Fatwa and Research)
  32. Italy (Follow Saudi)
  33. Jordan (Follow Saudi)
  34. Kazakhstan (Follow Saudi)
  35. Kenya (Claims of sighting)
  36. Kuwait (Follow Saudi)
  37. Kyrgizstan (Follow Saudi)
  38. Lebanon (Follow Saudi)
  39. Libya (following others who declared Eid on Monday 28 July)
  40. Luxembourg (ECFR - European Council for Fatwa and Research)
  41. Macedonia (Follow Turkey)
  42. Madagascer (Local Sighting)
  43. Malawi (Local Sighting)
  44. Malaysia (Age > 8 hours, altitude > 2°, elongation > 3°)
  45. Mauritania (Follow Saudi)
  46. Montenegro (Follow Turkey)
  47. Namibia (Follow Saudi)
  48. Netherlands (Follow Turkey)
  49. New Zealand (Federation of Islamic Association of New Zealand)
  50. Norway (Some follow Saudi)
  51. Palestine (Follow Saudi)
  52. Philippines (Follow Saudi)
  53. Poland (Calculation)
  54. Qatar (Follow Saudi)
  55. Romania (Follow Saudi)
  56. Russia (Follow Turkey)
  57. Saudi Arabia (Official Announcement)
  58. Serbia (Follow Turkey)
  59. Slovania (Follow Turkey)
  60. South Africa (Local Sighting)
  61. Spain (Some Follow Saudi)
  62. Sudan (Follow Saudi)
  63. Sweden (Follow Saudi)
  64. Switzerland (Follow Saudi)
  65. Syria (Official Decision)
  66. Taiwan (Follow Saudi)
  67. Tajikistan (Follow Saudi)
  68. Tatarstan (Follow Saudi)
  69. Tunisia (Criteria of age, or altitude, or sunset-moonset lag)
  70. Turkey (Somewhere on the globe Altitude > 5°, elongation > 8°)
  71. Turkmenistan (Follow Saudi)
  72. U.A.E. (Follow Saudi)
  73. UK (Follow Saudi) [Coordination Committee of Major Islamic Centres and Mosques of London]
  74. UK (Local Sighting) [Wifaaqul ulama), (Ahle Sunnat Wal Jamaat], OR (Sighting from South Africa)
  75. USA (FCNA/ISNA - Fiqh Council of North America/Islamic Society of North America)
  76. Uzbekistan (Follow Saudi)
  77. Yemen (Completed 30 days)
  78. Zimbabwe (South Africa Sighting)
29 July 2014
  1. Australia (Local Sighting)
  2. Brunei (Local Sighting)
  3. China (Some follow Local Sighting)
  4. Hong Kong (Local Sighting)
  5. India (Local Sighting)
  6. Iran (Local Sighting)
  7. Iraq (Shi'aas Follow Local Sighting)
  8. Morocco (Local Sighting)
  9. Oman (Local Sighting)
  10. Pakistan (Local Sighting)
  11. Spain (Some Follow Morocco)
  12. Sri Lanka (Local Sighting)
  13. Tanzania (Local Sighting)
In the final analysis
  1. Forty two (42) countries, with geographically different horizons, followed the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and nine (09) countries followed Turkey.
  2. Nearly fifteen (15) countries sighted the crescent 'locally', which was a sensible thing to do instead of blindly following the Saudis or the Turks.
  3. Some countries relied on official announcements or crescent sighting reports of neighbouring countries because of cloudy weather or other political conditions.
  4. On every Eid we witness a moon-sighting match between the Saudi Kingdom and the Turkish Ottomon Empire, an attempt to disunite the 'ummah' instead of erasing differences in the Islamic world.
Finally, have a lovely Eid al-Fitr.
©Tahir Gul Hasan, 2014