When is Ashura 2020

Day of Ashura or 10 Muharram 2020 is expected to take place on the 28th and 29th of August 2020 (9th and 10th Muharram accordingly). However, exact date of Ashura 2020 depends on your location and sighting of Moon of Muharram 1442.
The Month of Muharram

Muharram is not only the 1st month of Islamic Calendar but also called ‘The month of Allah’ and Optional (Nafil) fasting during this month are called the best fasting after the month of Ramadan. This is evident from the following Sahih Hadith:
"‘The Messenger of Allah (S.A.W.) said: “The best fasting after the month of Ramadan is the month of Allah, Al-Muharram.”’
(An-Nasai: 1613)
Also, Muharram is one of the four sanctified months of the year. As Allah Says in Quran:
“Indeed, the number of months with Allah is twelve [lunar] months in the register of Allah [from] the day He created the heavens and the earth; of these, four are sacred.”
(Surah At-Taubah: 9:36)
The four months mentioned in the Ayah are the months of Dhul-Qadah, Dhul-Hijjah, Muharram and Rajab. This is evident from the words of Holy Prophet (S.A.W.) on the occasion of his last Hajj sermon:
“The year is of twelve months, out of which four months are sacred: Three are in succession Dhul-Qa' da, Dhul-Hijja and Muharram, and (the fourth is) Rajab.”
(Sahih Bukhari: 3197)
This is the reason that Muharram is one of the sacred months and these words of our Prophet (S.A.W.) confirms its sanctity.

Day of Ashura

Ashura is observed on the 10th day of Muharram and it is the most sacred day among all its days.
Some other people attribute the sanctity of this day to the martyrdom of Husain Ibn Ali (R.A.) but the sacredness of 'The day of Ashura' cannot be ascribed to this event only as the sanctity of this day was established during the days of the Prophet (S.A.W.), much earlier than the birth of Husain Ibn Ali (R.A.). Martyrdom of Husain Ibn Ali (R.A.) is one of the most tragic episodes of our history and it is one of the merits of Husain (R.A.) this sad event in Karbala took place on the day of Ashura as Allah choose big days for big events.

Ashura Fasting

The practice of fasting on Ashura was known even before emergence of Islam. When the Prophet (S.A.W.) arrived in Madinah at the time of migration, the Jews were observing the fast on 'Ashura' and they said:
"This is the day when Moses became victorious over Pharaoh,"
On that, the Prophet (S.A.W.) said to his companions (R.A.):
"You (Muslims) have more right to celebrate Moses' victory than they have, so observe the fast on this day."
(Sahih Bukhari: 4680)
When different Companions (R.A.) told Prophet (S.A.W.) that fasting on the day of Ashura is glorified among Jews and Christians, then Prophet (S.A.W.) encourage them by saying:
“If I live until next year, I will fast the ninth day (of Muharram) too.”
(Ibn Majah: 1736)
Unfortunately, Prophet (S.A.W.) did not live to see the next year. Therefore, Muslims consider the 9th and 10th of Muharram as significant days in the Islamic calendar and observe fast on these days. [Sahih Muslim: 1134 (a)]
In the light of the Hadith, it is more advisable but not mandatory that the fast of 10th of Muharram should be attached with another fast preferably on 9th of Muharram because Prophet Mohammad (S.A.W.) wanted to distinguish the Islamic way of fasting from that of Jews as they only keep fast on the 10th of Muharram. However, most scholars agree that the fast of Ashura should be observed with fasting on the 9th or 11th of Muharram.
Earlier on, it was obligatory to fast on the 10th of Muharram. However later, fasting was made obligatory in Ramadan only and fasting on 10th Muharram was made optional. As narrated by Ayesha (R.A.) that Prophet (S.A.W.) said:
“Whoever wishes to fast (on the day of ‘Ashura’) may do so; and whoever wishes to leave it can do so.”
(Sahih Bukhari: 1592)
However, Prophet (S.A.W.) used to fast on the day of Ashura even after the fasting in Ramadan was made obligatory.
When Ibn Abbas (R.A.) was asked about observing of fast on the day of Ashura, whereupon he said:
“I do not know Allah's Messenger (S.A.W.) singling out any day's fast and considering it more excellent than another, except this day (the day of Ashura) and this month, meaning the month of Ramadan.”
[Sahih Muslim: 1132 (a)]
So fasting on the day of ’Ashura' is a confirmed Sunnah of the Holy Prophet and makes one entitled to a great reward from Allah.
According to Sahih Hadith, one of the many blessings of Allah for a person who observe fast on ‘Day of Ashura’ that his / her sins of the past year will be forgiven.
Narrated from Abu Qatada (R.A.) that the Prophet (S.A.W.) said:
“Fasting the day of ‘Ashura’, I hope, will expiate for the sins of the previous year.”
(Ibn Majah: 1738)
The Hadith clearly mentions the word of Prophet (S.A.W) as “I hope” which means that the person should observe the fast wholeheartedly for Allah only and seek reward from Allah only and, Inshallah, Allah almighty will reward that person with removal of his sins during the previous year.

Misconceptions about Ashura

Above discussion undoubtedly shows that importance and virtues of the day of Ashura as it is a day of Allah’s blessings and it is confirmed Sunnah to observe fast on this day. However, there are some misconceptions about the day of Ashura that have managed to find their way into the minds of some Muslims. Some very common misconceptions and superstitions are:
1- Prophet Adam (A.S.) was created by Allah on this day.
2- Prophet Ibrahim (A.S.) was born on 10th of Muharram.
3- Prophet Adam’s (A.S.) repentance was accepted by Allah on this day.
4- Day of Judgement will take place on Friday, 10th of Muharram.
5- Whoever takes bath on 10th of Muharram will never get ill.
6- One who puts kohl in his eyes on this day will not suffer from any eye disease.
7- Some people say that it is Sunnah to prepare a particular type of meal on this particular day and then distribute it.
8- Many Muslims don’t get married (Nikkah) during the month of Muharram as they think that it is an unlucky month.
Nothing has been reported in any Sahih Hadith from the Prophet (S.A.W.) or from his Companions (R.A.) about any of the above-mentioned incidents. Even, none of the four Imams encouraged or recommended such things. Not even a single reliable Islamic Scholars have narrated anything like this. So all these are just myths and nothing to do with Islam or Shariah. So all these things should be avoided and should not be followed by any Muslim.
In addition to that, according to Sahih Muslim: 1163 (a) and Tirmidhi: 438, Muharram is Allah’s month. Then how Allah’s own month can be evil and unlucky for His servants. So keep yourself away from these falsehoods and try to keep yourself on right path, on the path of our beloved Prophet (S.A.W.) and his Companions (R.A.).