By Pervez Bari
Bhopal: The 72nd Aalami Tablighi Ijtema (World islamic Preaching Congregation) started here on the outskirts of Bhopal in Einkhedi village soon after Fajr prayers on Friday.
Free transport arrangements
Free transport arrangements have been made from airport, railway stations and bus stands for the Ijtema venue.
Jamaats (teams) from about a dozen countries including Malaysia, Indonesia, Jordan, Srilanka, America, United Kingdom, Afghanistan, Russia, Combodia, Turkistan and Vietnam have also arrived to participate in this annual event. Special arrangements have been made for the teams coming from foreign countries.
Several groups belonging to different faiths have set up welcome stages for the devotees coming to attend Ijtema.
One such stage was set up at Bhopal talkies square where Father Anand Muttungal, Gurucharan Singh Arora, TR Gehlot, Gyani Dalip Singh, Pandit Narendra accorded floral welcome to the guests.
Jamaats also visited Bhopal’s landmark Tajul Masajid and attended Friday prayers besides lakhs of people offered Friday prayers at Eintkhedi as well.
Nikahs at the Ijtema venue
Meanwhile, Maulana Saad, the chieftain of Tablighi movement, solemnised more than 300 Nikahs at the Ijtema venue on the first day.
Camps for volunteers have been put up at Bhopal Railway Station, Habibganj Station, Bhopal Talkies, Prabhat Square and other places for assistance to members of jamaats. Guests coming from other places are being offered free tea and breakfast before being taken to the venue for free.
More than 3,000 Muslim volunteers are managing traffic control on the Ijtema route along with traffic police. A volunteer has been placed every 10 meter to facilitate smooth flow of traffic.
It may be mentioned here that the annual Tablighi Ijtima started in Bhopal since 1947 with a small gathering of just 13 persons. In 1947 the first congregation was held at Ghati Bhadbhunja in Bhopal city. It was shifted to Masjid Shakur Khan in 1948 where it took place for few years before it was taken to Taj-ul-Masajid where it was held till 2001. From 2002 the grand religious program is being held at Eintkhedi village about 15 kms from Bhopal city.