Eid-ul-Fitr, also known as Meethi Eid, is a significant festival for millions of Muslims across the world. It marks the end of Ramadan, the holy month of fasting and prayers. This year, the celebrations will take place on May 14, 2023.
The festival begins with the sighting of the crescent moon, which is first sighted in Saudi Arabia, the home of Mecca, the holiest site for Muslims.
While the day is marked by offering prayers, visiting friends and families, and feasting, Eid-ul-Fitr celebrations also hold a historical significance. It is believed that during the holy month of Ramadan, Prophet Muhammad received the first sighting of the Holy Quran and originated the celebration of the pious day. The earliest Eid-ul-Fitr celebrations were held in 624 CE, after the victory in the battle of Jang-e-Badar.
The day holds significant value since all practising Islam break their month-long fasting, which is focused on discipline, foregoing ills, and religious devotions. By refraining from negative actions throughout the month, devotees pay their respects to Allah on Eid.
Eid-ul-Fitr is the biggest Eid celebration in a year and is usually celebrated in a grand manner. The festivities usually begin an evening before, when the moon is sighted, and continue well into the next day. Feasting, prayers, exchanging cordial greetings, and visiting one another are customary.
Traditional delicacies like Sevaiyyan and Sheer Korma are prepared on the day, while with the changing customs, many more dishes have become popular too. The day is also associated with charity, and pious devotees distribute gifts, alms, food, and supplies to the poor and needy. Friends and families exchange gifts and wish each other ‘Eid Mubarak’. The festival is the most joyous occasion for the little ones, who receive ‘Eidi’ – money, gifts, or sweets from elders on the day as a token of love.