Trial Testimony Panel Update from Tuesday 4th January 2022 (for Jumada-II 1443 Hilal)

(Adapted from a WhatsApp/Email update to Trial Testimony Panel Members by Eng. Qamar Uddin; dated 5 January 2022)

Following another month of a very successful moon sighting and reporting by the ICOUK members (see a Trial Testimony Meeting was held online via the Zoom App (which was held regularly since June 2021 on the 29th of each Hijri month).

The Ulama Panel who took the trial testimonies included two of ICOUK regular scholars (Shaykh Suliman Gani and Maulana Abdullah Ahmed) and the Panel members were also honoured to be joined by 3 guest scholars as observers (Maulana Yusuf Mota, Mufti Zaheer Aslam, Maulana Hanif Dudhwala), MashaAllah.

There were 3 Shahada Rooms set up to take testimonies from multiple witnesses simultaneously within a short time (5 – 10 mins), to avoid the long delays as was the case in the previous month (where 7 witnesses gave their testimonies to one Ulama Panel in sequence, one after the other). Unfortunately, only 1 witness joined the Testimony Panel on this occasion, as the others couldn’t make it (and sent their apologies).

The organisers decided to hold the above trial meetings from 8:30 pm – 9:30 pm, (in the Winter months) to enable the Ulama Panel members to be free from their Imam/Madrassah duties as well as to allow the witnesses sufficient times to return home from work/travel.

The next monthly Trial Testimony Panel Meeting will be on Wednesday 2nd February 2022 (same time) and it will probably be one of the last ones, before deciding if the following 29th date meeting (ie. on Thursday 3rd March 2022) should be for real or not (ie to make a decision on UK-only sighting or not)?

The Trial Testimony Panel organisers believe that the “sighting and reporting” are public responsibilities which *all* the UK Muslims must carry out (as per Sunnah), but the “testimony and declaration” tasks come under the Fiqh rulings of “communal obligations”, which are better conducted by a Council of Ulama (ie. the decision-makers) and not by a volunteer group such as the ICOUK.

Therefore, the monthly Trial Testimony Meetings will most probably end in two months’ time (i.e. by 3rd March 2022), unless there is wider community support for adopting a UK-only moon sighting criteria? If you have comments/views regarding this matter, please do not hesitate to email us via our on-line Contact Us form.

TestimonyPanel 2022 01 04

Ref: Local or Regional Moon Sighting (April 2020) | Video: Trial Testimony Example (Oct 2020)