Amid Calls For Austerity, Valley To Celebrate Eid-ul-Fitr Today

28 July 2014
The Tribune (Chandigarh)
M Aamir Khan

Srinagar: With the culmination of the fasting month, the Kashmir valley is all set to celebrate Eid-ul-Fitr tomorrow. Even as people have been flooding markets for Eid shopping during the last couple of days, separatists have called for austere celebrations to express solidarity with the people of Gaza. While hardline Hurriyat leader Syed Ali Geelani has called for 30 minutes of 'token peaceful protest demonstration' after the Eid prayers against the 'Israeli terrorism in Gaza', National Conference president Farooq Abdullah has urged people to keep the sufferings of the people of Palestine 'in mind' during celebrations. However, a festive mood prevailed in the markets of the Valley with locals jostling for last-minute shopping. The maximum rush of shoppers during the last two days was witnessed at the bakery and butcher shops. Most of the offices, especially the government ones, wore a deserted look this afternoon as people left home early. The Eid-ul-Fitr celebrations usually start with special prayers in the morning. The largest Eid prayer congregations here are expected at Eidgah in downtown Srinagar and the Hazratbal shrine on the banks of the Dal Lake. The traffic police have already released a route map to deal with the heavy rush. People extend greetings to their kith and kin after Eid prayers. Locals prepare a host of delicacies, mostly non-vegetarian, on the festive occasion. Eid-ul-Fitr is celebrated for two days in the Valley. Meanwhile, DGP K Rajendra held a video conference with all district superintendents of police and deputy inspectors general of police. An official said the DGP was apprised of the preparations made with regard to deployment of personnel and coordination among various agencies and communication network to ensure peaceful Eid congregations across the state. The DGP called for holding joint meetings with senior citizens to seek people's cooperation for maintaining law and order. Governor, CM extend greetings: Governor NN Vohra and Chief Minister Omar Abdullah conveyed warm greetings to the people of Jammu and Kashmir on Monday, the eve of Eid-ul-Fitr. The Governor expressed the hope that the auspicious occasion would be the harbinger of peace, progress, prosperity and happiness. Omar, in his message, reminded people of the essence of Eid, saying that the day demands 'us to remember the poor and needy and share the happiness with them'.