The Holy Ramadan, the lunar month of self-purification through fasting and abstinence, will begin in the country from tomorrow as the new moon was sighted in Bangladesh sky this evening.
The National Moon Sighting Committee took the decision at a meeting at Islamic Foundation's Baitul Mukarram office with State Minister for Religious Affairs and Committee Chairman Sheikh Mohammad Abdullah in the chair.
Muslims are meant to fast from dawn to dusk during the lunar month, a time of restraint and austerity.
Fasting during Ramadan is one of the five obligatory pillars of Islam, along with the Muslim declaration of faith, daily prayer, annual charity -- known as "zakat" -- and performing the Hajj pilgrimage.
During the holy month, all government, semi-government, autonomous and semi-autonomous institutions will follow new office timing as announced by the government.
All these offices will remain open from 9:00 am to 3:30 pm with a 15-minute Zohr prayer break from 1:15 pm to 1:30 pm during the month.
Besides, Bangladesh Bank in a notice yesterday fixed the office hours during Ramadan from 9:30am to 4:00pm.
However, for customers, transaction hours will be from 9:30am to 2:30pm, the central bank said in a notice issued ahead of the Ramadan.
For bank staff, there will be a prayer break between 1:15pm to 1:30pm. However, service will continue during this break through bank’s internal coordination.
Services at all banks across the country will remain off on Friday and Saturday throughout the holy month, the notice said.