Central Eid Committee of Greater Chicago
5933 North Lincoln Ave, Chicago, IL 60659
Phone (773)989-9330 Fax (773) 989-9367

Hilal committee criteria for making the decision on the start of the Islamic Months:

  1. General:
  • The Hilal Committee is a subcommittee of the Central Eid Committee of Greater Chicago
  • A hadith in regard to moon sighting:  Abu Hurayrah (R) narrated that Allah’s Messenger (PBUH) said; observe the fast on sighting of the new moon and break it on the sighting of it. But due to clouds the actual position of the month is canceled from you, you should then complete thirty days. –Sahih Muslim
  • Another Hadith in regards to moon sighting: Narrated by Ibn Umar (R) that I heard Allah’s apostle saying “when you see the crescent of the month of Ramadan start fasting and when you see the crescent of the month of Shawal stop fasting and if the sky is overcast and you did not see it then regard the month of Ramadan as of 30 days.” –Sahih  AL Bukhari
  1. Criteria: The Hilal committee has approved the following criteria for making the decisions on the beginning of the Islamic Months:
  • The moon sighting area (matla) is defined as the entire area of North America (which includes Canada, Main land United States of America, Mexico and Caribbean Islands) and Chile from South America. Any reporting of the sighting of the Hilal from within the defined ‘Matla’ shall be acceptable when it does not contradict the astronomical data issued by the majority of the Muslim experts who are known in the Muslim community as  experts in this field.  This astronomical data indicates the possibility of moon sighting at various places along with other data for visibility of the moon.
  • However, if the moon is reported to have been sighted by a large number of Muslims in contradiction to the astronomical data issued by the recognized Muslim experts in this field, then the committee can decide to accept the reported sighting by a unanimous approval of the members of Hilal Committee.
  1. When the president of any recognized and well known Islamic Organization or Muslim Community Center or Imam of a Masjid has accepted the sighting of Hilal after directly talking to the witness or witnesses, then the Hilal Committee of Chicago shall consider it acceptable, provided the reported sighting satisfies criteria mentioned above in and the Chairperson of the Chicago Hilal Committee has talked directly to the President of the said Organization/ Community Center or Imam of said Masjid.
  2. Contact persons shall be appointed by the Hilal committee in the entire area of the defined ‘Matla’. These persons would be requested to make the arrangements for the moon sightings in their areas and inform the outcome to the Hilal Committee for the testimony from the witness or witnesses.
  3. Members of the Hilal Committee must be present at the place of the meeting decided by the Chairperson of the Hilal committee or Chairperson of the Central Eid Committee on the 29th of Shaban, Ramadan and Zulqada and must be available on the phone on the day before these dates.
  4. The Hilal Committee shall decide about the moon sighting within one hour period after the sun set on the west coast.

Signed by:
Maulana Abdullah Saleem
Maulana Ubaidullah Saleem
Mufti Azeemuddin Ahmed
Maulana Bilal Ali Ansari
Maulana Mohammad Abdul Haleem
Maulana Mohammed Ilyas Qasmi
Maulana Amjed Qasmi

Proposed: July 21, 1985
Approved April 16, 1986
Amended: March 22, 1986
Amended: July 8th 1989
Amended: May 15th, 2005
Amended: June 21st, 2009
Amended: October  30th, 2014