DHAKA, June 7 (Xinhua) -- Bangladesh Muslims have begun fasting for the holy month of Ramadan.
Bangladesh authorities on Monday night announced the new moon of Ramadan was spotted Monday evening.
Following the announcement, Muslims in capital Dhaka and elsewhere in the country rushed to mosques on Monday night to conduct special prayers. During the month of Ramadan, Muslims conduct special prayers each night, called taravih prayers, during which long portions of the Qur'an are recited.
Bangladesh Muslims received arrival of Ramadan gladly by offering taravih prayer and then eating sehri meal before fajr prayer early on Tuesday.
Since Tuesday afternoon, Muslims in Bangladesh capital Dhaka have been seen to throng Iftar markets for purchasing traditional Iftar items.
During Ramadan, the month of self-purification through fasting and abstinence, Muslims in Dhaka usually buy their Iftar items from a century old traditional market in old part of Dhaka.
There was no exception this time.
There was a festive atmosphere before sundown in Chawkbazar market in old Dhaka where makeshift stall owners and itinerant vendors sell food items to thousand of customers.
Sellers of over 100 makeshift shops in the market were Tuesday seen busy selling the unique and traditional items for Iftar, the evening meal when Muslims break their fast.
City dwellers believe that the traditional Iftar items in this market have a distinct appeal to the food connoisseurs after daylong fasting during this month.
People were seen to buy food items for Iftar including several types of fruits, delicious kebab, custard and curd.
Muslims follow a lunar calendar and a moon-sighting methodology that can lead to different countries declaring the start of Ramadan a day or two apart.
Traditionally, countries announce if their moon-sighting council spots the Ramadan crescent the evening before fasting begins.
People from all walks of life, however, crowded in the Iftar market in Bangladesh's capital Dhaka for purchasing Iftar items on Tuesday afternoon, the first day of the holy month of Ramadan in the South Asian country.
Ramadan ends with the festival of Eid al-Fitr, one of the largest Muslim religious festivals.