When Is Muharram
The Islamic calendar is a lunar calendar as against the Gregorian calendar which is a solar calendar. A month in the Islamic calendar begins on sighting the first crescent of the new moon. Hence, the Islamic lunar calendar is 11 or 12 days shorter than the solar year and all the Islamic dates vary from year to year. Like all months, Muharram too migrates throughout the solar years. The month of Muharram or Al-Hijra in 2019 is expected to Tuesday September 10.
Muharram / Ashura Observances Dates:
- 2019: 10th September 2019 (Tuesday)
- 2020: 29th August 2020 (Saturday)
Both Sunni and Shia Muslims observe this occasion in different manners. Shia Muslims dress themselves in black, the color of mourning, and attend the majlis (assemblies), where Shia orators read out and enact the incident of martyrdom of Imam Hussain and his team in detail. The main event takes place on the 10th day of Muharram. Shias carry out large processions through the streets holding banners and models of mausoleum of Imam Hussain and others. This is done to show the grief and sorrow that Imam Hussain and his team has undergone. They even beat their bodies with small sharp metal knives tied to a chain.
Sunni Muslims, too, commemorate Muharram, but in a less demonstrative manner than the Shia Muslims. They observe the occasion as a festival and mark the 10th day of Muharram as the most significant one. Fasts are observed on the 9th and 10th of Muharram or on the 10th and 11th of Muharram. Mouth-watering and delectable delicacies are prepared in almost every household. The delicacies are consumed by the family and distributed to friends and relatives as well. A good quantity of food is given to the deprived as well.