Mirwaiz Umar Farooq

Wishes Kashmiri Pandits on Herath

Srinagar, Mar 08: Mirwaiz- Muhammad Umar Farooq Friday stated that the pulpit of the Grand Masjid has always supported peace and stressed on the people to take advantage of the upcoming fasting month in seeking repentance for sins from Almighty.

Amid tight security arrangements, Mirwaiz Umar while addressing the Friday sermon at the Jamia Masjid, said that the grand masjid symbolises communal harmony and expressed gratitude for being able to address the congregation once again.

He lamented that while prayers and religious sermons continued uninterrupted in other parts of the valley, it was denied at Jamia Masjid Srinagar, which was “deeply disheartening”.

“Despite appeals from Anjuman Auqaf Jama Masjid, religious leaders and scholars to allow me to offer Friday sermons and prayers, I was not granted permission to do so,” he said.

As the case regarding the “lifting restrictions” on my movements is under judicial review, I remain hopeful that justice will prevail, Mirwaiz added.

Anjuman Auqaf said the announcement of Mirwaiz’s return to Jamia Masjid sparked enthusiasm among the people who gathered in huge numbers in the grand mosque.

As the month of Ramadan approaches, Mirwaiz expressed hope that Jamia Masjid will remain open for religious sermons and gatherings. “As the holy month is about to begin, we need to introspect, check our deeds and follow the Quran and Sunnah to be successful,” he said. “Many times our hardships and sufferings are a consequence of our personal and collective actions and deeds as a people. So this Ramadan let’s honestly assess our intentions, actions and deeds and ask ourselves whether they are in sync with Islamic principles of how a Muslim should lead life and conduct interactions ?”

Mirwaiz also extended warm wishes to the Kashmiri Pandit community on the occasion of their religious festival, Maha Shivratri, locally known as ‘Herath’.

“Keeping with the tradition of the Mirwaizeen for decades of following the message and practice of universal brotherhood and harmony in Islam among the majority and minority communities, we would like to convey our warm wishes to the Kashmiri Pandits on their festival today,” he said.

“The pulpit of Jamia Masjid has always supported peace and wants all matters to be resolved peacefully. Today, on the occasion of the religious festival of our Pandit community, we congratulate them and feel all should live with peace, love and brotherhood,” Mirwaiz said, adding, “Problems should be resolved and relationships should get stronger. After that, peace will prevail and the happiness and prosperity we dream of can be fulfilled.”

In the end, Mirwaiz expressed hope that authorities would permit him to conduct religious functions, especially in the light of Ramadan.(KNO)