Srinagar: Major shrines and mosques remained closed on Shab-e-Qadr, the night of the holy month of Ramadhan when the first verses of the holy Quran were revealed to the Prophet Muhammad, in the Kashmir valley in view of the continued surge of COVID-19 positive cases.
However, night-long prayers were offered in mosques in the interior areas and Mohallas in the valley, including Srinagar, where devotees were seeing masks and keeping social distancing.
Jammu and Kashmir Union Territory (UT) Lt Governor Manoj Sinha, leaders of different political leaders, religious scholars and senior Army and police officials have greeted people on the occasion and appealed to people to follow COVID-19 Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) and pray at homes.
Greeting people on the occasion, Muslim scholars and Ulmas besides senior police officers have appealed to people to pray at home to prevent further spread of Coronavirus in the Kashmir valley, where 3430 fresh positive cases were reported on Sunday when 22 patients have lost battle against the deadly virus.
All major shrine, including Aasar-e-Sharief Hazratbal on the bank of Dal Lake which houses the Holy Relic of Prophet Mohammad, historic Jamia Masjid, Shrine of Sultan-e-Aarfeen Sheikh Mehboob-ul-Alam, the shrine of Gousal-e-Azam Dastigeer Sahib at Khanayar and Saraibala, Hazrat Syed Sahib Sonawar, Hazrat Mir Sayyed Ali Hamdani Khankahi Moula on the bank of river Jehlum and other worship places remained closed.
The Anjuman-e-Auqaf of Jamia Masjid, headed by moderate Hurriyat Conference (HC) chairman Mirwaiz Moulvi Omar Farooq, had announced the closure of the worship place last month. Mirwaiz is under house arrest since August 5, 2019, when the centre abrogated Article 370 and 35 A besides divided the J&K into two Union Territories (UTs).
The J&K Waqf board has announced the closure of all 133 shrines and mosques under its management in view of the increase in the positive cases of coronavirus.
No Shab-e-Qadr prayers were organized in major shrines and other worship places in the central Kashmir district of Badgam, including the Hazrat Sheikh Nooruddin Wali.
Similar reports were received from other parts of the Kashmir valley.
However, people, wearing masks and keeping social distancing, offered night long prayers in mosques in the interior areas and villages on the occasion.