Srinagar: Jumat-ul-Vida, the last Friday of the ongoing holy month of Ramazan, was observed with religious ferevor and gaiety. With payers disallowed at the historic Jamia Masjid Srinagar by the authorities, biggest congregation was held at Dargah Hazratbal.
Unlike last year when covid-19 pandemic forced most people to offer prayers at home, hustle and bustle normally associated with the occasion returned today. People thronged mosques, Khankahs, shrines and other holy places throughout the Kashmir Valley and Jammu region.
The historic Jamia Masjid here, which used to witness the largest congregation prayers on the day, was out of bounds for devotees as large number of police and paramilitary forces remained deployed to restrict the movement of people. Anjuman Auqaf Jamia Masjid, the managing body of the grand mosque, informed on Wednesday last that the government and police officials led by a magistrate visited the mosque premises at Nowhatta here and conveyed that authorities have decided not to allow congregational prayers on Shab-e-Qadr as well as Jumat-ul-Vida.
The decision came barely a few hours after J&K chief secretary Arun Kumar Mehta, along with Kashmir divisional commissioner Pandurang K Pole visited Jamia Masjid alongside with Dargah Hazratbal and Khanqah-e-Moula shrines to review arrangements for the religious gatherings.
In absence of the prayers at Jamia Masjid, the biggest gathering was held at Dargah Hazratbal where devotees from all over the Valley converged.
Similarly, large congregation prayers were also at other shrines and mosques across the length and breadth of the Valley.
Devotees were also seen offering Friday prayers on the streets adjacent to several mosques and shrines at various places. Traffic on the routes to Jamia Masjid and Hazratbal shrine was diverted due to the heavy rush of devotees.
Meanwhile Eid shopping also picked up as remains the norm after Jumat-ul-Vida. Good rush of shoppers is expected in the coming days even as the traders, of late, have been complaining of dip in sales.