Srinagar: No prayers were held in major shrines and mosques, including Asaar-e-Sharief Hazratbal and historic Jamia Masjid, on the occasion of Jumat-ul-Vida, the last Friday of holy month of Ramadhan in view of the COVID-19 pandemic in the Kashmir valley, where despite corona curfew from April 29, a total of 3,241 positive cases were reported on Thursday when 18 patients have also died.
However, in mosques in the interior areas, Jumat-ul-Vida prayers were offered with adherence to standard operating procedures (SOPs), including wearing masks and keeping social distance.
Meanwhile, Lt Governor Manoj Sinha and all leaders from different political parties, have greeted people on the occasion.
Inspector General of Police (IGP), Kashmir range, Vijay Kumar today visited different parts of the city, including some shrines and other worship places to review the overall situation, including implementation of corona curfew. He also appealed to people to follow preventive measures and guidelines to contain further spread of virus.
The historic Jamia Masjid in the down town Srinagar remained closed. The Anjuman Auqaf Jamia Masjid, headed by chairman of moderate Hurriyat Conference (HC) Mirwaiz Moulvi Omar Farooq has already announced suspension of all congregational prayers in the historic worship place on April 28 as a precautionary measure in view of further surge in the corona virus positive cases.
Mirwaiz is under house detention since August 5, 2019 when centre abrogated Article 370 and 35 A besides divided the Jammu and Kashmir into two Union Territories (UTs).
Security forces and police personnel were seen deployed at the main gate of the Jamia masjid, where IGP took stock of the situation. He was accompanied by other senior security force and police officials.
The Assar-e-Sharief shrine, which houses the Holy Relic of Prophet Muhammad, at Hazratbal on the bank of Dal Lake was also closed. All the gates of the shrine were closed and police personnel remained deployed to prevent any assembly in the shrine, which is under the management of Wakf Board. The Board has announced closure of all 133 shrine and mosques under its management in the UT.
No Friday prayers were also offered at the shrine of Hazrat Sheikh Abdul Qadeer Jeelani at Khanyar and Sarai-Bala, Hazrat Mehboob-ul Alam, Hazrat Syed Sahib Sonawar, Hazrat Mir Syed Ali Hamdani and shrines and major worship places in Srinagar, where corona curfew was being implemented strictly.
Mosques on the main roads also remained closed due to restrictions and security force and police personnel remained deployed to prevent assembly of people in view of the corona virus.
The shrine and Khankhan associated with Hazrat Sheikh Nooruddin Wali at Charar-e-Sharief in the central Kashmir also remained closed. No Friday prayers were offered, a resident Ghulam Nabi Dar told UNI over phone. He said reports of no prayers at the shrine of Pakherpora were also received.
However, he said, prayers were held in mosques in the interior parts of the town. Similar reports were also received from other parts of the Badgam district.
Jumat-ul-Vida prayers could not be held in major shrines and Jamia Masjids in other parts of the Kashmir valley, including south, north and central Kashmir.