Kashmir Holds Shia Sunni Peace Conference3 December 2011
Srinagar: The two sects of the Muslim community, Shia and Sunni came together at a peace conference in Srinagar on Saturday with an aim to promote harmony and brotherhood. The conference took place in the month of Muharram, which marks the anniversary of the battle of Karbala when Hussain ibn Ali, grandson of the Islamic prophet Muhammad was killed by his political rival, Yazid, in A.D. 680 in the Iraqi city of Karbala. Members of Shia community observe fast during Muharram, as it is the second holiest month for Muslims after the month of Ramadan. Arshid Saliha, a resident of Srinagar, said it was a great achievement to host such a conference in Kashmir which brought the two communities of Muslims at a common forum. 'Here both Shia and Sunni, both the communities have come together and the basic aim and motto of this conference is humanity, peace, mutual affection, which can be witnessed by people. And to maintain such a conference in Kashmir is very big achievement. And it sticks to the basic message given by Hussain-ale-Salam (Hussain ibn Ali) that promotes brotherhood and humanity,' said Saliha. Religious scholars, Muslim leaders and residents, all came together for this maiden conference. The event began with religious scholars reciting verses from the holy Quran and later studied the teachings of Hussain ibn Ali. 'We are delighted to see people from both the communities come together. The conference promotes brotherhood and love between Shia and Sunni community. There is a great need to initiate such efforts, so that love, compassion, brotherhood and peace can spread all around us,' said Bashir Nehvi, religious scholar. The martyrdom day of Imam Hussein is marked by prayers and processions led by Tazia or a replica of the Imam Hussein's tomb and self-flagellation by mourners.