Unofficial moon sighting body likely to stir controversy in KP

June 13, 2018

By: Sabir Shah

The meeting of provincial Ruet-e-Hilal committee will be held on Thursday in Peshawar for the sighting of Shawwal moon.

There are reports that an unofficial moon sighting committee will also meet in Peshawar tomorrow.

Majority of the people from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and tribal areas follow the committee’s decisions on moon sighting.

Every year, the unofficial committee of Peshawar’s Masjid Qasim Ali Khan divides the nation, announcing its decision in contrast with the central Ruet-e-Hilal Committee.

Mufti Shahabuddin Popalzai, the powerful cleric of Masjid Qasim Ali Khan has for years remained the centre of controversy across the country.

Last year, Popalzai had suddenly disappeared from Peshawar before Eid and was later found in Dubai.

Some clerics in Charssada and Mardan also follow Masjid Qasim Ali Khan’s announcement, while rest of the KP, including Hazara division, parts of Swat and Chitral celebrate Eid with the center.

The Afghan refugees settled in Peshawar and its suburbs offer their Eid prayers every year in line with the official announcement of their government in Afghanistan which follows Saudi Arabia.

Eid congregations are held at Peshawar’s Board Bazaar, Nasir Bagh, Afghan Colony, Hayatabad, Woch Nehr, Bakhshu Camp and Shamshato Camp – the areas where the majority of Afghan refugees live.

People in Mohmand and other agencies celebrate Eid as per the announcements by local clerics.