Ban On 8th Muharram Procession To Stay

Srinagar: The district administration has denied permission for the traditional 8th Muharram procession in Srinagar, days after the Divisional Administration authorised the District Magistrates to take call on whether to allow processions or not.

According to eyewitnesses, officers from police station Shaheed Gunj visited Guru Bazar area on Sunday afternoon and informed the residents that the traditional 8th Muharram procession from Guru Bazar to Dalgate will not be allowed. The alleged U-turn by the administration, they said, came as a shock to the people who were making preparations for taking out the procession after a long spell of 3 decades.

“The police officers said you have to observe Muharram the way it’s been observed for last 30 years. The cops told us to visit Deputy Commissioner’s office to reconfirm this decision,” Humayun Ali Khan, a resident told Kashmir Observer.

He further claimed that the policemen said that curfew will be imposed to prevent mourners from carrying out the procession.

On Monday, Khan said a delegation of residents visited DC office to enquire about the ban on procession.

“However, we were told that DC was busy. We were asked to visit the office on Tuesday,” he said.

SHO Shaheed Gunj, Sabzar Ahmed Ganaie confirmed to Kashmir Observer that the 8th Muharram procession will not be allowed.

“The government has ordered ban on Muharram procession from Guru Bazar to Dalgate. This procession is not allowed,” he said.

When asked who has ordered the ban, the police officer said it has come from the government.

Pertinently, on Monday last, the administration modified the earlier directions issued regarding the Muharram processions / gatherings stating that appropriate decisions for suitable action will be taken by the District Magistrates’ in consultation with police, health and other stakeholders.

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Zaid Bin Shabir

A media graduate from LPU, Zaid Bin Shabir is a Srinagar based journalist whose works have appeared in many local and international publications.

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