Srinagar: Authorities have decided not to allow Muharram procession on 8th Muharram through city centre here on August 7.
The High Court of J&K and Ladakh at Srinagar had asked the competent authority to take the decision regarding the representation by a Shia body who had sought permission to allow the procession on Muharram 8th from Guru Bazar to Dalgate (Buchwara) Srinagar.
In this regard, the District Magistrate, Srinagar issued a formal order here today, which cited various past incidents of “violence”.
The deputy commissioner said that he held a detailed meeting involving all the Field Magistrates, Police officers and leaders of Shia Community wherein they were briefed about the routes allowed/ disallowed for Muharram procession.
“Law & order and Security concern is the top most priority of the Government of the Jammu and Kashmir keeping in view the larger public interest and safety of its citizens,” he said in the order, a copy of which lies with GNS, adding, “In view of the facts and circumstances read in conjunction with the reports of Intelligence Agencies thereof, more particularly the security concerns of the District Srinagar with respect to the Muharram, the processions therein cannot be allowed on the Gurubazar toward Buchwara and Abi-Guzar towards Zadibal routes respectively, keeping in mind the public interest, law & order and security.”
He said from past instances and cases and upon analysis of reports/data from different security agencies with regard to incidents which have occurred during the Muharram, “it is evident that not only there has been breach in peace & law and order, but also there have been Sectarian clashes which have resulted in breach of peace and threat to maintenance of law and order and also resulted in damage to public property and injuries to civilians and security forces as well.”
Meanwhile, the District Magistrate (DM) has said that Administration respects the religious sentiments and practices of all, at the same time it is the joint responsibility of one and all to adhere to the security measures to ensure protection and safety of all citizens.
The DM also said that alternate routes for conducting Muharram Processions on occasion have already been provided to perform the ceremonies peacefully. He further said in case of violation of the order Police/Security agencies will take cognisance of the matter under the Law.
In a handout to GNS, the police said that the Muharram procession from Guru Bazar to Dal Gate in Srinagar has not been allowed by the authorities.
“General public is requested to respect rule of law and don’t appreciate/endorse any rumour regarding procession or rally,” reads the statement.
Two major processions of 8th and 10th Muharram were banned in 1989 by the then administration. Since then no processions have been allowed till now. (GNS)