Shab-e-Barat observed in Kashmir, prayers not allowed at Jamia Masjid

Shab-e-Barat is observed by Muslims on the intervening night of the 14th and 15th days of Sha'ban,? the eighth month of the Islamic calendar.

Srinagar: Shab-e-Barat was observed across the Kashmir valley with night-long prayers at major mosques and shrines, even as no congregation was allowed at the historic Jamia Masjid here, officials said on Monday.

Devotees thronged mosques and shrines on Sunday night to pray and participate in Quran recitations while preachers and religious scholars highlighted the importance of the night and the teachings of Islam.

Shab-e-Barat is observed by Muslims on the intervening night of the 14th and 15th days of Sha’ban,? the eighth month of the Islamic calendar.

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The biggest congregation was held at the Hazratbal shrine which houses the holy relic of Prophet Mohammad.

However, no prayers were allowed at the Jamia Masjid in the Nowhatta area of the city here, the officials said.

Anjuman Auqaf Jamia Masjid, the managing body of the grand mosque, said night prayers were not allowed at the mosque and Mirwaiz Umar Farooq was put under house arrest.

“Once again, the gates of Jamia Masjid Srinagar were forcibly closed by the authorities on the auspicious occasion of Shab-e-Barat while Mirwaiz Umar Farooq (was) put under house arrest, hence disallowing congregational prayers on Shab Baraat at Jamia Masjid,” the Anjuman said in a statement.

Condemning the action, it said in these days of the Islamic month of Sha’ban, preceding the holy month of Ramadan, when mosques are reverberating with prayers and religious ceremonies, the central Jamia Masjid, the most important religious centre of the valley, is “silenced”.

The Anjuman said it is “extremely unfortunate and people are extremely upset and heartbroken at how the authorities are dealing with their central religious place and their religious head”.

“Such blatant violation of the religious rights of people and interference in their religious affairs is unacceptable. Anjuman strongly protests it,” the statement said.

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