Eid-e-Milad: Date, Origin and Significance

India will celebrate Eid-e-Milad dedicated to Prophet Muhammad on 1 December.

2 min read
Eid-e-Milad: Children greet each other after offering prayers. Image used for representation.

India, a land that embraces festivals of all faith will celebrate Eid-e-Milad on 1 December. The day, dedicated to Prophet Muhammad, observes both celebration and mourning.

When is Eid-e-Milad?

Eid-e-Milad in India will begin on the evening of 1 December and end on the evening of 2 December. The date was announced by the Ruet-e-Hilal Committee Chairman Mufti Muneeb-ur-Rehman. The announcement was made following a meeting of the moon-sighting committee in Karachi.

The day is celebrated in the third month of the Islamic calendar called Rabi' al-aawal. Though according to the popular belief the Holy Prophet was born on the 12th day of Rabi-ul-Awwal in 571 AD, the Sunnis believe in remembering his teachings anytime of the year.

Where Did Eid-E-Milad Originate?

Many historians and scholars believe that no such day to celebrate the Prophet's birthday existed in earlier days. Their arguments are also woven around the controversy that such a festival was adopted to counter the celebrations of Christmas. Experts also trace the origin of the festival to Turkey and Egypt.

According to the Indian Express, a lot of followers who celebrate the festival claim that there are many references of Milad-ul Nabi in the holy Quran.

Eid-E-Milad: A Day of Celebrations and Mourning

Eid-e-Milad, also called Maulid or Mawlid, is celebrated by singing hymns in praise of the Prophet. The Sunnis and the Shia sects celebrate the day differently. While the former holds prayers throughout the month and not mark the day as one of mourning, the latter believes that Prophet Muhammad chose Hazrat Ali as his successor on this day.

Edi-e-Milad is celebrated in most Muslim-dominated countries by organising large processions, decorating homes and shrines. Food and offerings are distributed after poetry or naats are recited in praise of the holy Muhammad.

Indian Muslims celebrate it by offering namaaz and performing other ritualistic customs. The Hazratbal Shrine in Jammu and Kashmir displays the relics of Prophet Muhammad. In some other parts, rallies are conducted.

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