Thousands of devotees from across Kashmir are expected to visit revered Hazratbal shrine here today to offer congregational prayers on Friday following Eid-Milad-un-Nabi (SAW).
The devotees including men, women and children would have glimpse of the holy relic of Prophet Muhammad (SAW), which will displayed after every congregational prayers on Friday.
Divisional administration said that all arrangements have been put on place for devotees including designated parking, drinking water, public transport, sanitation and power supply.
Eid-e-Milad-un-Nabi (SAW), the birth anniversary of the Prophet Muhammad (SAW), was celebrated across the state with religious fervor on 1 December. However, devotees had complained lack of heating system while women devotees said that they had to offer nightlong prayers under the open sky.
Rifat Farooq, a retired government employee said that no heating arrangements were put in place in Sheesh Khana Masjid, a place adjacent to the shrine meant for women devotees to offer prayers on 30 November.
"Around 3 am on 1 December, some Wakf officials had entered the hall and asked women to leave. They forcefully threw belongings of women devotees out of hall. They said that Fajr (Morning prayers) time has come and men have to offer prayers in the hall and women devotees are not allowed to occupy the place. We faced humiliation," she said.
Nazir Gujri, supervisor of Hazratbal Shrine said "it was compulsion." "Whatever the women devotees have told you is true. Actually, the women devotees outnumbered the men. Their number was around fifteen thousand. Sheesh Khana Masjid can accommodate around one thousand devotees only," he said.
Meanwhile, the devotees urged the authorities to put in place proper arrangements for Friday following.