The Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa police have registered two First Information Reports (FIRs) under the Ramazan Ordinance 1981 against two local clerics of North Waziristan and eight others who announced the moon had been sighted and subsequently celebrated Eid on Wednesday.
The first FIR was registered in Mir Ali against a local cleric Mufti Rafiullah of the Haider Khel clan. Similarly, a second FIR was registered against a prayer leader Qari Roman of Miranshah. Along with these two clerics, eight others were also booked who had asked people to accompany them to sight the moon.
“Both the FIRs have been registered under the Ramazan Ordinance 1981. The clerics and these eight locals are blamed for falsely claiming to sight the moon which led to declaration of Eid on Wednesday by these clerics,” said a police official while talking to The Express Tribune, adding that police were searching for them and the arrest were yet to be made.
Local residents of North Waziristan were confused on as a partial Eid was observed across most of the districts and two clerics who announced to sight the moon were a target of jokes as well as widespread criticism on social media.
A mixed Eid was observed across the district.
“There were announcements in some mosques that tomorrow (Wednesday) Eid will be observed and others urged people to fast as the announcements of moon sighting were not authentic, leaving people highly puzzled,” said a local resident while talking to The Express Tribune.
“Most of the people observed Eid but some people still did not pay any heed to these announcements and will observe Eid on Thursday or Friday,” he said.
Local residents and others openly criticised the local clerics on social media and asked government to take action against these clerics who were setting a bad example for others too.
There is a tradition of three Eids across the Khyber-Pakthunkhwa (K-P) province.
Normally Afghan refugees and people belongting to tribal districts celebrate Eid with Saudi Arabia or Afghanistan. A second Eid is observed in K-P on the call of Mufti Shahabudin Popalzai and a third one is observed in cantonments along with the federal government.
Published in The Express Tribune, May 13th, 2021.