‘Where is the wisdom in spending millions for moon sighting?’

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ISLAMABAD: Federal Minister for Science and Technology Fawad Chaudhry criticised the Ruet-e-Hilal committee, urging them to conduct moon sightings voluntarily.

The federal minister questioned the wisdom of spending millions to sight the moon. He said that Rs4 million are spent each year on the moon sighting activities.

“The Ruet-e-Hilal committee should do this voluntarily,” he said. “All around the world, moon sighting is done voluntarily. Where is the wisdom in spending Rs4 million for sighting moons for Eid and Ramazan?”

The federal minister said that he had respect for the ulema but he had to give his opinion as well.
Fawad Chaudhry had suggested forming a committee comprising technically sound people who would determine important Islamic dates for the next 10 years.

“Educated scholars are hailing my proposal,” he said.

Chairman Ruet-e-Hilal Committee, Mufti Munib-ur-Rehman, had earlier slammed the federal minister for his views. Mufti Munib had urged Prime Minister Khan to rein in his ministers from commenting on religious matters.

Fawad Chaudhry had earlier said that the committee formed would consist of members from SUPARCO, Meteorological Department and the Ministry of Science and Technology.

Responding to a question whether clerics would accept his decision, the minister had said that the decision that how the country was going to be governed cannot be left on them.

He had argued that Pakistan would not have been established in the first place if it was in the hands of clerics, adding all leading ulemas were opposed to the idea of a separate Muslim country.

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