Srinagar, Dec 29: The Jamia Masjid remained locked for almost 18 Fridays during the year 2017 including on Juma-tul-Vida (the last Friday of Ramadan). Pertinently, following the alleged lynching incident of senior Police official in June this year, no congressional prayers were allowed in Jamia Masjid Srinagar on the occasion of Jumatul Vida (the last Friday of Ramadan), the first time in the living history of Kashmir.
Kashmir’s chief cleric and chairman of the moderate faction of the Hurriyat Conference, Mirwaiz Umer Farooq, who usually delivers sermon before the Friday prayers, was also confined to his house on several occasions in 2017.
Much to the disappointment of thousands of devotees who would normally offer Friday prayers, the huge deployment of forces deployed in the locality has become a routine practice of the government particularly aftermath the 2008 Shrine Board Agitation.
In 2016, after the killing of Hizbul Mujahideen commander Burhan Wani the Grand Mosque (Jamia Masjid) remained locked for 19 weeks, it was the longest period after Maharaja Rule that Jamia Masjid was locked down.