Srinagar: After 19 consecutive Fridays, the mandatory congregational Friday prayers were today allowed by the authorities in Srinagar’s Jamia Masjid.
Notably, the historic Jamia Masjid remained under siege since July 8 of this year following the uprising in the Valley triggered after the killing of Hizb commander Burhan Wani in a gunfight at Bumdoora village of Kokeranag area of South Kashmir’s Anantnag district on July 8.
However, the authorities allowed the mandatory congregational Friday prayers in the grand mosque here today where hundreds of people mostly youth offered prayers today.
Unlike previous 19 consecutive Fridays, no deployment of forces was made in and around the historic Jamia Masjid.
Meanwhile, Jamia Masjid’s head cleric and Hurriyat (M) chairman, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq who continues to remain under house was not allowed to lead prayers in the Masjid.
However, in absence of Mirwaiz, Imam of central Jamia Masjid Srinagar, Moulana Syed Naqashbandi led the prayers at Jamia Masjid.
While addressing congregation at the historic Jamia Masjid, Moulana Syed Naqashbandi pitched for the dialogue process to resolve the Kashmir issue.
He said that both India and Pakistan should peacefully hold a dialogue to resolve the Kashmir issue. “We are fighting for our rights since years and we are hopeful that the Kashmiris will achieve their goal (Freedom),” he said.
Moulana Syed Naqashbandi condemned the continuous house detention of Mirwaiz and said that such tactics won’t deter people to achieve their goal.
He also condemned the siege on Jamia Masjid for 19 consecutive Friday’s and said that New Delhi must not interfere into the religious practices of people.
Meanwhile, during his speech, the youth who were hearing the speech of Moulana Syed Naqashbandi stood up and staged massive protest against India.
They raised anti-India and pro-freedom slogans during Moulana Syed Naqashbandi’s speech.
Meanwhile, as soon as the Friday prayers in the Jamia Masjid, scores of masked youth assembled outside the Srinagar’s Jamia Masjid and staged protest.
The masked youth carrying Pakistani flags were raising slogans in favour of ‘Azadi’.
Witnesses said that the protesters later marched towards Hawal during which forces used tear smoke shells to disperse the protesting youth resulted in stone pelting.
They said that the youth pelted stones on forces deployed on roads during which forces dispersed the youth by resorting to tear gas canisters. (KNS)