Oil Report

Iran body backs reverting to daylight saving time

TEHRAN, Sept 16 (Reuters) - Iran’s constitutional watchdog, the Guardian Council, approved a law on Sunday to re-introduce daylight saving time, a measure scrapped by President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad in 2006.

Iran had stopped putting the clocks forward since spring 2006 because, although it aims to save electricity by lengthening evening daylight by an hour, the government said there was no evidence to show it cut energy use.

Changing the clocks had also been scrapped for several years after the 1979 Islamic revolution. At that time, some clerics said the practice was a Western measure that caused confusion about Muslim prayer times.

Parliament passed a bill in August demanding the practice be reintroduced by the government of Ahmadinejad, who came to power in 2005 pledging a return to revolutionary values.

Parliament is dominated by a faction which broadly backed Ahmadinejad’s presidential bid but, since his election in 2005, has become more critical of some of his policies, particularly his handling of the economy.

“The Guardian Council has found the bill on the official time change was not against (Islamic) sharia (law) or the constitution, so approved it,” Iran’s IRNA news agency reported.

The Council must approve all laws to ensure they adhere to the constitution and Islam before they come into effect.

Daylight saving time, when clocks move forward by one hour, previously began in Iran on March 21 and clocks were put back an hour again on Sept. 22.