Low key Eid in Kashmir, no congregational prayers allowed

Muslims offering Eid prayers at Jamia Masjid at Bandipora on Saturday. -Excelsior/Aabid Nabi
Muslims offering Eid prayers at Jamia Masjid at Bandipora on Saturday. -Excelsior/Aabid Nabi

Curbs re-imposed in wake of surge in +ve cases

Irfan Tramboo

Srinagar, Aug 1: Eidul Azha was today observed with no large congregational prayers held anywhere amid restrictions re-imposed overnight in Srinagar and other major towns of Kashmir as a precautionary measure keeping in view a surge in COVID-19 positive cases.
While the major Eid congregations were normally held at Eidgah and Hazratbal in Srinagar and other major Masjids across Kashmir valley all these places remained deserted as no congregational prayers were allowed by the administration on the occasion. However, in some local Masjids very less people offered quick prayers.

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The people were seen maintaining social distance and wearing masks during the prayers that were held in local Masjids. The Eid prayers at most of these local Masjids were scheduled before 7 am.
The city centre Lal Chowk remained deserted so did the majority of roads and streets in Srinagar. While there was less to be celebrated this Eid, occasionally, children were seen, wearing new clothes, roaming around during the day in their own localities.
The deployment of the security forces was made overnight and security forces were seen imposing restrictions in the city during the early morning.
Police and paramilitary forces had erected barricudes to reinforce the restrictions. In certain places, the police vehicles were seen asking people to stay indoors as the lockdown was re-imposed in the areas.
The district administration Srinagar had last night issued directions, ordering re-imposition of restrictions in the city. However, it had said the nominal traffic movement would be allowed keeping in view the distribution of Qurbani meat.
The restrictions were ordered because of the situation that has emerged out of COVID-19 and has led to a spike in cases in Srinagar.
The week-long restrictions, as ordered, is a continuation of restrictions re-imposed on July 23 and temporarily lifted for three-days from 29th to 31st July on the eve of Eid.
The order had directed for strict adherence to all the instructions that were issued. It had also directed for strict compliance with Eid-related advisories the Government had issued.
Pertinently, it was seen during the day that people did not extend the process of distribution of Qurbani meat and kept it confined to their respective areas with adherence to the SOPs that were issued by the experts.
“I preferred to keep it (distribution of Qurbani meat) limited to my mohalla, it would have been risky to reach to the distant relatives; keeping in limited, with adherence to SOPs, I think was the only option-and I think most of the people have done the same,” Huzaif , a resident of Srinagar told Excelsior.
About taking due care when carrying out the Qurbani on Eid, the scholars, as well as the doctors, had asked people to follow SOPs while doing so.
The Srinagar administration had issued several advisories deliberating on do’s and don’ts to be taken care of while offering the Qurbani. The advisories strictly directed that social distancing must be maintained during Qurbani and the face masks are worn at all times.
The advisories had also called for avoiding visits to one another’s house, at the same time, stressing that such precautions will be in the interest of one’s personal and public health.


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