Disallowing Prayers At Jamia Masjid Condemned


SRINAGAR: The managing body of the Jamia Masjid on Friday said that the authorities barred them from holding Friday prayers on the occasion of Jummat-ul-vida at Kashmir’s grand mosque.

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“District magistrate and police officials visited jama Masjid in the morning at 9.30 am and asked the management to lock the gates of the Masjid as administration had decided that jummat-ul-vida prayers will not be allowed at the Masjid,” Anjuman Auqaf Jama Masjid said in a statement.

Denouncing the administration’s move, Jammu and Kashmir National Conference President Dr Farooq Abdullah condemned disallowing of Jumat-Ul-Vida prayers at the historical Jamia Masjid in Nawhatta and said the measure is a clear violation and interference with the religious rights of the people.

“Jamia Masjid is the central mosque and an epicentre of faith of millions of Muslims across JK. Having this great mosque out of bounds for people on the auspicious day of Jumat-ul-Vida is highly deplorable. Such unwarranted curbs hurt the religious sentiments of millions and are unsuited to the country’s democratic, secular moorings besides debunking the claims of government on changed ground situation across Kashmir,” he said.

All Parties Hurriyat Conference in a statement said that disallowing Juma tul Vida ( last Friday of Ramzan ) prayers at the historic Jama masjid , on such an important religious day  when lakhs of namazis from all over the valley traditionally pray at the Masjid for its great religious significance , is condemnable. It is a direct violation of people’s fundamental right to practice their religion.

Calling the move of the administration a brazen violation of religious freedom, Apni Party President Syed Mohammed Altaf Bukhari expressed deep regret over the closure of historic Jamia Masjid in Srinagar on the auspicious occasion of Jumat-ul-Vida.

He said, “It is unfortunate and deeply regrettable that authorities yet again have barred Muslims from offering prayers in Jamia Masjid even on this most auspicious day of Jumat-ul-Vida. This is also a brazen violation of religious freedom, which is guaranteed by the Constitution.”

He urged the administration to revisit such decisions and ensure the practice of closing the mosque is not repeated on the upcoming occasions of Shab-e-Qadr and Eid-ul-Fitr.

Apni Party President said that the practice of repeatedly disallowing people from offering prayers in the grand mosque, which has been a spiritual centre for the Muslims of Kashmir for centuries, is hurting the religious sentiments of the masses and it causes great distress to lakhs of Muslims who traditionally come from various parts of Valley to join congregational prayers here.

Vice President and Media Head of Apni party, Syed Basharat Bukhari criticised the authorities for denying people the right to practice their religion freely and without any hindrance.

Basharat Bukhari said that it was Chairperson JK Waqf Board  Darakshan Andrabi, who made a statement that Eid prayers would be allowed at Eidgah.

“Surprisingly the Home Minister and LG have time and again stated that security is sound and foolproof in Kashmir, which raises the question of why security would suddenly become a problem on Eid day. If the security is indeed foolproof then it appears as though the administration does not want people to offer Eid prayers, which is unacceptable. HM and LG should accept and acknowledge that security in Kashmir is fragile”, he said.




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