The time for Iftar

Q 2: What is the ruling on a person who delays breaking Sawm (Fast) until a long time after Maghrib (Sunset) Prayer during Ramadan; for example, at 9 or 10 P.M.?

A: A fasting person should break Sawm immediately at sunset. This complies with the regular practice and words of the Prophet (peace be upon him). In this regard, it is reported on the authority of Sahl ibn Sa`d (may Allah be pleased with him) that the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said: People will remain on the right path (i.e., acting upon the Sunnah) as long as they hasten to break Sawm (immediately at sunset). (Agreed upon by Al-Bukhari and Muslim) In brief, delaying Iftar (breaking Fast) until a long time after sunset does not conform to the Sunnah (whatever is reported from the Prophet); rather, it is a Bid`ah (innovation in religion).May Allah grant us success. May peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Muhammad, his family, and Companions.