Notes: All timings are represented in 12-hour notation in local time of New Delhi, India with DST adjustment (if applicable).
Hours which are past midnight are suffixed with next day date. In Panchang day starts and ends with sunrise.
Eid al-Fitr is also known as Meethi Eid and the festival of breaking the fast is a major Muslim festival and is celebrated across the world on the first day of Shawwal, the tenth month of the Islamic calendar (Hijri). Eid-al-Fitr also marks the end of the holy month of Ramadan. Traditionally, the month in Islamic calendar begins with the sighting of the crescent moon. Thus, the sighting of the moon on the last day of Ramadan confirms the observance of Eid al-Fitr for the next day.
During Ramadan, Muslims observe strict fast Rozah from sunrise to sunset each day and devote their time to establish a closer connection with divinity, Allah. They practice absolute abstinence during the month of Ramadan and dedicate most of their time in the devotion of Allah and his teachings. Thus, Eid al-Fitr marks the beginning of festivities after the month-long discipline and restraint.
The festivities begin with the early morning bath followed by the first prayer of the day called Salat al-Fazr also called Morning Prayer. Then the whole family eats something sweet, traditionally dates and adorn themselves in new clothes and jewellery. Then men and boys walk to the Eid prayer venue, Eidgah or a big open space, where the whole community perform Eid prayers together as Eid prayers must be performed in congregation. Women and girls can either stay at home to offer their prayers or can join the congregation.
After the prayer, Eid greetings are exchanged as men, women, young and old donned in new clothes say Eid-Mubarak and embrace each other signifying love and mutual brotherhood. In the Indian subcontinent, Muslims in their traditional attire Shalwar-Kameez and traditional cap visit each other, give away gifts and participate in the revelry of Eid all-day. Women adorn their hands with Henna for the occasion. Eidi, a sum of money is given to children as part of Eid gift.
A special feast is prepared on the occasion of Eid al-Fitr, which comprises mainly sweet dishes, thus it is also called Meethi Eid in India and other South Asian countries. The main delicacy of Eid al-Fitr is Seviyan which is made by boiling wheat noodles with milk and is served hot or cold garnished with dried fruits. The other dishes prepared on the occasion are Kheer, Phirni, Halwa, Gulab Jamun, Malai Kulfi, and Ras-Malai amongst others. The Eid festivities can continue up to three days.
Charity is one important aspect of Eid in Islam, and Muslims from all walks of life are encouraged to make some donations either in form of money or food and clothes. Zakat al-Fitr is an obligatory form of charity given to poor. Traditionally it is given at the end of Ramadan and before people go for Eid prayers. Muslims as a part of sanctifying their possessions give a portion of their annual savings as the tax to poor or needy. Whilst in some countries Zakat is voluntary, in other countries it is mandatory and is collected by the state.
The festivities of Eid al-Fitr began in the holy city of Medina after the migration of Mohammad Prophet from Mecca. He established that two holiest days for indulging in festivities have already been marked in the Quran by Almighty or Allah called Eid al-Adha and Eid al-Fitr, thus the tradition of celebrating Eid came into existence.
Eid al-Fitr largely signifies the breaking of fast and beginning the new month on a sweet note. During Ramadan, Muslims abstain from all kind of worldly pleasure and strictly follow teachings of Allah sanctifying their souls of vices and other impurities. Many Muslims read the Quran during the month of Ramadan and strive to establish a connection with Allah, thus Eid al-Fitr is quintessentially a day of revelry and merriment after strict observance and abstinence. Muslims embrace their fellow humans that symbolizes accepting and loving every one of whatever social strata and class one belongs to.