Ashura will be observed on July 17 as Muharram moon, which marks the beginning of new Islamic year,

Ashura will be observed on July 17 as Muharram moon, which marks the beginning of new Islamic year, was not sighted in Pakistan today and, the Central Ruet-e-Hilal Committee announced on Saturday. 

The first day of the month will fall on July 8 (Thursday).

The announcement came after moon-sighting body presided by Maulana Abdul Khabir Azad presided met in Quetta to sight the crescent of Muharramul Haram 1446 Hijri.

The meetings of zonal and district bodies of the Ruet-e-Hilal Committee also simultaneously held at their respective headquarters.

The Pakistan Meteorological Department (PMD) had predicted unlikeliness of Muharram moon sighting today due to partly cloudy or cloudy weather in most parts of the country as the moon-sighting body gets busy.

The Met Office had said that the new moon would be born on the crossing conjunction point at 03:57 PST on July 6.

Muharram is regarded as one of the four sacred Islamic months. Ashura falls on its 10th day when the grandson of the Holy Prophet Mohammad (PBUH), Hazrat Imam Hussain (RA) along with his family members were martyred in the battle of Karbala.

Faithful hold processions and majalis across the country in Muharram, while religious scholars address huge gatherings amid tight security, with thousands of law enforcers deployed to ensure security.

To curb the spread of hate material on the internet, the provincial governments have sought the suspension of six social media applications for about a week during Muharram so that security is not compromised.

Moreover, Sindh government has banned 143 ulema and zakireen for 60 days as part of security measures during the month of Muharram, while Punjab government has requisitioned the services of the Pakistan Army and Pakistan Rangers while announcing a ban on pillion riding across the province.

However, the federal government has not yet taken any decision to suspend internet services during Muharram, a spokesperson for the Ministry of Interior Friday said.

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