Srinagar: Government forces burst teargas shells and resorted to lathicharge to disperse 9th Muharram (Tasua) procession in Srinagar on Tuesday sparking protests from the mourners and condemnation from religious and political groups.
Key Muharram processions in Srinagar are banned since 90s while smaller ones are allowed within the confines of select Shia populated areas.
However there had been no ban on 9th Muharram procession from Khanqah-e-Maula to Habba Kadal in old city till last year.
Mourners gathered at Shamswari near Khanqahe-Maula in the morning and took out Alam Sharif procession.
However, as the procession emerged on the main road near MP School, police swung into action and lobbed teargas shells on the mourners.
CRPF and police also resorted to cane-charge.
However teargas and cane charge had no impact as undeterred Shia mourners continued to reassemble and march ahead.
Reciting Nauha’s in praise of martyrs of Karbala and slogans like ‘Labayk Ya Hussain’ ‘Shia-Sunni Bhai Bhai and Hum Kya Chahtay: Azadi” mourners confronted police and continued their march, till the procession reached Habba Kadal.
Calling police action as a direct interference in the religious affairs of Muslims, mourners said on the one hand government was providing police protection to RSS marches while on the other same police is used to crush religious practices of Muslims in the Muslim majority state.
On Monday authorities had imposed curfew in entire civil lines to prevent procession on 8th day of Muharram from Guru Bazar to Dalgate Imambargah.
Meanwhile police sources said curbs will be imposed in civil lines on Wednesday to prevent attempts by mourners to take out Ashura procession from Abi Guzar.
Mourners Defy Curfew Take Out Procession
Defying restrictions mourners led by Ittehadul Muslimeen leader Maulana Masroor Abbas Ansari took out a procession from Mandibal, Nowshehra to Nabdi Pora Zadibal. While party patron Maulana Abbas Ansari was placed under house arrest from 7th Muharram eve itself Masroor has been evading police.
Masroor emerged at Alipur and led the procession.
Addressing the mourners at Alamgiri Bazar chowk, Masroor asked people to follow Imam Hussain if they want the ongoing Azadi struggle to reach a logical conclusion.
“Kashmir has been transformed into Karbala and here everyday is Ashura and every night Shaame Ghareeban”, Masroor said adding need of the hour is to follow the path shown by Imam Hussain (AS).
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