Scottish Hilal Forum agreed that the Shara’i new month is ascertained if the following conditions are satisfied:
- The conjunction must have actually occurred.
- The moonset follows sunset.
- The visibility falls either in Category A or B or C for either Makkah, or any city in the UK or any city in North, North West, West, South and South West African countries. Imam Abu Hanifah (RA) held the opinion of ittihad-ul-mataley’ – إتّحادالمطالع (unity of horizon) – i.e. global sighting is valid.
- The city that is chosen in the regions/ counties mentioned above in the point 3 for the start of Hijri month must be same for the end of Hijri month.
Now we can safely determine the 22nd of September 2017, Friday as the 1st of Muharram-ul-Haram هـ1439. According to Her Majesty’s Nautical Almanac Office (HMNAO), the visibility falls in the following categories on 21st of September 2017:
|City||Visibility||Lag time (minutes)|
|Cape Town – South Africa||A||79|
|Dakar – Senegal||A||71|
|Accra – Ghana||A||71|
|Freetown – Sierra Leone||A||72|
Note: Although the moon is born on 20th September but its visibility for all the above cities and any other cities in Europe, Africa and Middle East falls in category F; hence 21st September cannot be the 1st of Muharram-ul-Haram هـ1439.