Awal Muharram or Maal Hijrah is one of the Malaysian public holidays for Muslims. It marks the beginning of the Islamic New Year according to the Hijri calendar. The first month, known as Muharram is also coinciding with the Prophet Muhammad PBUH and his followers’ journey from Mecca to Medina in Saudi Arabia in the year 622AD. Muslims in Malaysia celebrate Awal Muharram by attending special prayers at mosques, followed by a mass marching and gathering at public area on the next day. To signify the occasion, a special award called Tokoh Maal Hijrah will be awarded by the federal and state governments to deserving Muslims and non-Muslims in Malaysia.

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