No prayers in Jamia Masjid for 14th Friday

Srinagar: No Friday prayers could be offered for the 14th consecutive week in historic Jamia Masjid in Shehar-e-Khas (SeK) today, when curfew has been extended to more areas in the summer capital, Srinagar to stop ‘pro-freedom’ protests.

Meanwhile, people were allowed to offer prayers at the shrine of Syed Yaqub Sarfi Sahib in Sonwar, where last week Friday prayers were not allowed in view of United Nations Military Observer Group India and Pakistan (UNMOGIP) office challo called by separatists.

Police said curfew has been imposed in areas falling under five police stations in downtown and Shehar-e-Khas (SeK), besides Batmaloo to stop protests after Friday prayers.

However, prayers were offered in the Valley, barring in Mosques on main roads, though devotees later joined protest marches in their areas and raised ‘pro-freedom’ slogans.

All the roads leading to Jamia Masjid, where chairman of moderate HC Mirwaiz Moulvi Umar Farooq, who remained lodged in sub jail in Cheshmashahi since August this year, addresses congregation every Friday; remained closed with barbed wire.

Both the factions of the Hurriyat Conference and Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF), spearheading the present agitation in Kashmir since July 9, today urged people to march towards Raj Bhawan, besides offering Friday prayers on Boulvard road from Dalgate to Shalimar on the bank of famed Dal Lake. The separatists in their latest calendar have extended the strike till October 20.

A large number of security forces and state police personnel remained deployed outside the Masjid and adjoining areas to stop any movement on the roads.

Last Friday also, no prayers could be offered due to curfew restriction, to prevent any demonstration.

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