As the UAE step into the last days of Ramadan this year it is expected to see a change in the fasting hours. The Chairman of the Emirates Astronomy Society said that from April 11 onwards the fasting period will surpass 14 hours a day. This change is due to the approach of summer with an increase in the daytime thereby making nights shorter towards the end of the month.
The longest period of fasting, 14 hours and 13 minutes is expected to be on the last day of Ramadan
Ramadan has already begun and the people of UAE who are fasting will have to refrain from eating and drinking for more than 14 hours a day from Tuesday onwards. According to the information provided by the Emirates Astronomical Society, from the beginning of the month of Ramadan, the holy month people have been fasting for 13 hours and 46 minutes a day. This period of fasting is expected to reach a maximum of 14 hours and 13 minutes by the day before the Eid Al Fitr.
Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Society, Ibrahim Al Jarwan, said that based on the location of each person in different emirates, there can be a slight variation in the exact duration of fasting. This variation is a negligible one with a difference of only a few minutes.
He said the changes in the fasting hours are due to the change in the length of day and night. As the sun tilts from the equator and changes the latitude of the place there happens a change in the duration of day and night which can be observed throughout the year.
The length of day and night becomes more equal when the sun is closer to the equator. Some countries experience continuous daylight during summer and continuous darkness in the winter season, this happens when the sun is closer to the polar regions.
UAE experiences its longest daytime between June 17 and 25, with record daylight hours of 15 hours and 13 minutes. The lowest duration of daytime is experienced during December, from the 14 to the 28th with a daytime of about 12 hours and 3 minutes.
The Society announced that according to their calculations, the Eid Al Fitr in the United Arab Emirates is expected to fall from April 20, Thursday to April 23, Sunday. The exact timing of Eid Al Fitr will be confirmed by the Moon sighting committee close to the date.
The people of Chile had the year’s shortest fasting hours this Ramadan. They had a fasting period of about 11 hours and 30 minutes. These short period of fasting hours that lies between 11 to 12 hours a day can be seen only in the countries like New Zealand, South Africa, and Argentina which lies in the Southern Hemisphere.
The Muslims who live in Iceland’s city of Reykjavik will be experiencing a record for longest fasting hours as they live in a city that has the highest duration of daytime this year. It is expected that the fasting hours in the city will be 16 hours and 50 minutes a day.
Ramadan is considered the holy month of the year according to the Islamic calendar. This year’s Ramadan started on the 23rd of March and is expected to end by the 20th of April, with Eid Al Fitr, the festival that commemorates the end of the holy month likely to fall on the 21st of April. The exact date of Eid Al Fitr will be announced by the Moon sighting committee.
According to the Islamic Calendar, Ramadan is the ninth month, the month in which Quran was revealed to Prophet Muhammed. It is on the night of Laylat Al Qadr, one of the last nights of the month of Ramadan.
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During this holy month, Muslims are required to abstain from eating and drinking from dawn to dusk. It is considered the month of charity, blessing, and devotion. The Islamic Calendar consists of only 354 days, the reason why Ramadan arrives 11 days earlier every year.
The month of Ramadan begins with the sighting of the new crescent moon and will last for almost 29 to 30 days. The end of Ramadan is decided by sighting the next crescent moon. Ramadan in UAE is observed with the official announcement of the sighting of the new crescent moon by the Moon sighting committee which is in Makkah, Saudi Arabia. The city of Makkah, the birthplace of Prophet Mohammed is considered the holiest city in the Islamic world.
Suhoor and Iftar are the two main meals in the month of Ramadan. People who fast will have their first meal, Suhoor, early in the morning before sunrise. That meal taken at the end of the day to break the fasting is called Iftar. Muslims also will follow a daily prayer in the mid-evening in addition to the five regular daily prayers.
The last ten days of Ramadan are more special, with people spending more time in mosques and prayers and reciting the Quran. Eid Al Fitr is the festival that breaks the fasting of the holy month. People celebrate this day with their family with a great feast and in spirituality.