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Jamia desecration incident: Mirwaiz cleans pulpit, says time to isolate divisive elements

Srinagar: Chairman of Moderate faction of Hurriyat Conference Mirwaiz Umar Farooq along with locals cleans the Jamia Masjid after the protest against Islamic State (ISIS) group for the desecration of Jamia Masjid by the ISIS supporters, in Srinagar on Wednesday, Jan 02, 2019. For the first time since Islamic States flags emerged on the streets of Kashmir, ISIS sympathisers on Friday stormed the Jamia Masjid Srinagar and waved a black flag over the pulpit, the spot used by Hurriyat Chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq to deliver his Friday sermons. PTI Photo by Umar Ganie

Chairman Hurriyat (M) and patron Awami Action Committee, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, Wednesday led a protest march to the Jamia Masjid here against the desecration of the pulpit of the historic mosque last week.

Mirwaiz led the march of his supporters from various walks of life from Rajouri Kadal and cleansed the pulpit where some unknown pro-ISIS supporters had displayed the flag of the global outfit and desecrated the pulpit by standing atop it with shoes on after Friday prayers on December 28.

“Not only has the incident saddened the people of Kashmir, but there is growing demand for isolating these elements (ISIS supporters),” the Mirwaiz said, while addressing his supporters.

He appealed to the people to beware of such divisive forces who are bent on creating sectarian divide in Kashmir.

Earlier in the day, a meeting of Awami Action Committee, held at Mirwaiz Manzil Rajouri Kadal, was chaired by Mirwaiz.

All activists and members of AAC including those from districts as well as Hurriyat activists participated in the meeting, which discussed the attempted desecration of the pulpit of the historic masjid.

The participants, as per a spokesperson, pledged that such incidents won’t be allowed to happen again and any attempt aimed at damaging the sanctity or sacredness of the grand masjid will not be tolerated.

Addressing the participants of the meeting, Mirwaiz said that old city has always been the epicentre of Kashmir’s spiritual and religious quest and its political ideology.

“Mirwaizeen along the centuries have preached the message of unity and harmony in Islam besides leading people on their political rights,” the spokesperson said.

He said the grand masjid will continue to spread this message and represent people’s right while raising the voice against injustice and repression.

Mirwaiz said the coming Friday will be observed as Youme Taqadus in which heads of various religious and resistance political parties will jointly raise their voice against this act of attempted desecration of pulpit of historic Masjid and convey a message that nobody will be allowed to tamper with the centrality of Jamia Masjid and what it stands for.

After the culmination of the meeting, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq led a  rally in which AAC workers, Hurriyat leaders, members and the general public, traders and large number of youth participated who reached Jamia Masjid where the mosque especially the pulpit was cleaned.