Thousands gather at Hazratbal shrine to see holy relic, offer prayers on Mehraj-e-Alam

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Srinagar: Amid COVID-19 pandemic and inclement weather conditions, Shab-e-Mehraj, the night of ascent when the Holy Prophet Muhammad (SAW) ascended to the highest levels of heavens, was on Friday observed with religious fervor across Jammu and Kashmir.

Notably, Muslims every year observe the Shab-e-Mehraj on 27th of Rajab (Islamic calendar), the night the Holy Prophet (SAW) embarked on a special journey to meet Allah Almighty, crossing seven skies riding the heavenly ‘al-Buraq’.

The word ‘Mehraj’ is derived from Arabic word Urooj, which means height, or ascension. During Mehraj, the command for five daily prayers (Salaat) was also given to the Holy Prophet (SAW).

Thousands of devotees from the different parts of the Valley thronged Dargah Hazratbal shrine, housing the relic of the Prophet (SAW). However, unlike previous years, no night long prayers were held at Dargah Hazratbal shrine and at the historic Jamia Masjid.

Nonetheless, the devotees offered mandatory Friday congregational prayers at Hazratbal shrine and had a glimpse of the holy relic after all the prayers today.

Emotional scenes were witnessed at Hazratbal shrine when the holy relic was displayed after every prayer especially after the Friday congregational prayers during which they raised their hands for prayer.

Special prayers were held at almost all the shrines and local Masjids here in Kashmir where the religious clerics highlighted the importance of the night and its blessings. The teachings and aspects of the life of Prophet Muhammad (SAW) were also highlighted during the Friday sermons and Ijtimas.

Officials told KNO that it was expected that a huge gathering will be witnessed at Hazratbal shrine, but the congregation in view of the inclement weather conditions remained low. A shrine management official said that they tried their level best to facilitate the devotees amid incessant rains. “Thousands reached the shrine and had the glimpse of holy relic. The holy relic was displayed after every prayer of the day. It will be displayed for devotees tomorrow also (March 13) after every prayer,” he said.

Meanwhile, the traffic department had made arrangements for the smooth passage of the vehicular movement in view of the Shab-e-Mehraj. The department had also issued traffic advisory for smooth passage of the traffic.

The district administration besides appealing for following Standard Operating Procedures (SOP), had made special arrangements for the devotees—(KNO)

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