Reference: Fataawa al-Lajnah ad-Daa.imah lil-Buhooth al-‘Ilmiyyah wal-Iftaa. – Fatwa No. 7753
Fataawa Ramadhaan – Volume 1, Page 75, Fatwa No.34
Question: What is the ruling regarding those who do not fast at the sighting of the crescent of Ramadhaan once seen until they see it for themselves, using as a proof [for this] the hadeeth that says:
«Fast when you see it (the new moon of Ramadhaan) and stop fasting when you see it (the new moon of Shawwaal)».
Is it correct for them to use this hadeeth as a proof?
Response: What is obligatory is fasting once the sighting of the crescent is established, even if that was by one trustworthy witness from amongst the Muslims. This is so because the Prophet (sal-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) ordered fasting when the bedouin Arab bore witness to the sighting of the crescent. As for using the hadeeth:
«fast when you see it»
…as a proof that any individual does not fast until he sees the crescent himself, this is incorrect. This is because the hadeeth is a general address for fasting once the sighting is established even if that was by one trustworthy person from amongst the Muslims.
And with Allaah lies all the success, and may Allaah send prayers and salutations upon our Prophet Muhammad (sal-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) and his family and his companions.