Market, shops remain open
Srinagar, Aug 04: After six consecutive weeks, the mandatory congregational Friday prayers were today allowed by the authorities in Srinagar’s Jamia Masjid.
The Jamia Masjid remained closed for the Friday prayers since Jumma-tul-Vida (last Friday of Ramadhan) following the lynching of a senior cop on Shab-e-Qadr outside the historic Masjid.
However, the authorities allowed the congregational Friday prayers in the grand Masjid here today where hundreds of people mostly youth offered prayers today.
All the gates of the historic Masjid that remained locked for the past six Fridays were allowed to open by the authorities today.
Unlike previous past six consecutive Fridays, no deployment of forces was made in and around the historic Jamia Masjid.
Witnesses said that Jamia Market was also open and shopkeepers were allowed to do the normal business today.
They said that a huge rush of shoppers buying essentials was witnessed throughout the day in the market.
Earlier, on Thursday, the traders from downtown area protested against the continuous lockdown of Jamia Masjid and had demanded an immediate end to the lockdown.
Meanwhile, Jamia Masjid’s head cleric and Hurriyat (M) chairman, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq who continues to remain under house was not allowed to deliver sermons in the Masjid today.
However, in absence of Mirwaiz, Imam of central Jamia Masjid Srinagar, Moulana Syed Naqashbandi led the prayers at Jamia Masjid, who condemned the house detention of Mirwaiz and lockdown of Jamia Masjid.
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 were raising slogans in favour of ‘Azadi’.
Witnesses said that the protesters later pelted stone son forces who in return used tear smoke shells to disperse the protesting youth resulted in stone pelting.
A police official said that the minor clashes erupted in the area after Friday prayers ended. “The youth were dispersed by using mild forces,” he said. (KNS)