UAE | General

TV station blunder forces Ras Al Khaimah residents to end fast 20 minutes early

Fatwa urges residents to fast extra day after RAK TV aired Friday Maghreb adhan 6.48pm

  • By Bassam Za’za’, Legal and Court Correspondent
  • Published: 00:00 August 8, 2013
  • Gulf News

Ras Al Khaimah: An unknown number of residents in Ras Al Khaimah will have to fast an extra day following a TV station blunder that aired the Maghreb adhan on Friday about 20 minutes earlier than the actual timing.

RAK television, widely followed by residents here especially on the local time of ending the fast, broadcast the Maghreb adhan [call for prayer] on Friday at 6.48pm instead of 7.05pm, prompting a number of Emiratis and expatriates to end their fast nearly 20 minutes earlier.

Immediately after the blunder on August 2, RAK television published an apology and clarification on its screens before the adhan was aired again at the right time.

The UAE’s General Authority of Islamic Affairs and Endowments issued a fatwa demanding RAK’s residents or anyone, who ended his/her fast early on Friday due to the TV station’s blunder, to fast another day to compensate the lost day.

When contacted by Gulf News, a RAK TV official confirmed the incident and said that an electric shortcut caused the technical blunder.

“It was not a human error, but it was a technical one. Actually the power went off and by the time when the backup generators started working, the blunder happened. The adhan usually is programmed to be aired at prayers timings but due to the outage that happened around 6.30pm, the blunder took place. The Maghreb [sunset] adhan was automatically aired around 6.48pm … nearly 15-20 minutes earlier. The blunder happened on the television and the radio station as well. Shortly after that, the television aired an apology on its screen and the adhan was aired at the right time on Friday,” said the official.

“The preset program was running when the power went off. The program was hit during the few seconds when the blackout happened and the backup generators went on. Evidently it was not an intentional error and it could hit anyone. We regret what happened,” concluded the official.

There were no exact figures as to how many people ended their fast due to that television blunder.

Gulf News
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