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Monday, 11 March 2024 14:34

Indonesian Government Declares Ramadan's First Day on March 12

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An official observing the moon sighting to determine the first day of Ramadan 1445 Hijri in Palembang, South Sumatra, on Sunday (10/3/2024). (Photo:ANTARA/M. Imam Pramana)

VOInews, Jakarta: Indonesian Ministry of Religious Affairs declared Tuesday (12/3/2024) as day one of Ramadan 1445 Hijri and the first day of fasting in Indonesia. That is following the isbat (confirmation) meeting in Jakarta. As the first day of Ramadan has been determined, Indonesian Muslims can start performing their evening tarawih prayers on Monday (11/3/2024).

"The isbat meeting decided that the first day of Ramadan 1445 Hijri to fall on Tuesday," Minister Yaqut Cholil Qoumas stated at the press conference to report the isbat meeting resolution on Sunday (10/3/2024) as reported by Antara.


The isbat meeting started at 5 p.m. Jakarta time during which experts informed the assembly regarding the hilal, or new crescent moon, observation, and sighting according to the available astronomical data. The assembly decided on the first day of Ramadan by considering information gathered by the hisab method, which calculates the lunar month beginning by mathematical and astronomical means, and the rukyat method, on-site confirmation of the moon sightings. The meeting was attended by representatives of religious organizations, astronomers, House of Representatives (DPR) members, and foreign envoys.


Meanwhile, in contrast with the government, the major Muslim organization Muhammadiyah declared the month of Ramadan to start on Monday. Muhammadiyah uses a different method to determine the first day of the new lunar month.


While the government adheres to the common criteria of Brunei, Indonesia, Malaysia, and Singapore (MABIMS), which recognizes a new lunar month after the moon reaches a certain degree over the horizon, Muhammadiyah determines that the new month starts as long as the new moon is visible. It means that members of Muhammadiyah begin their fast and offer their evening tarawih prayer one day earlier than the government's determined date. (Antara)

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