The government disallowed the congregational Friday prayers at historic Jamia Masjid in Downtown Srinagar once again, evoking strong criticism by the Jamia Auqaf as well as the people.
Amid strict curbs, police and paramilitary vehicles were stationed at main chowk Nowhatta to ensure that no pro-freedom protest takes place, a witness said.
A spokesman of Jamia Auqaf said that the present regime has set a "new example of religious interference" as it has been the 18th Friday this year when the people were barred from offering congregational prayers at Jamia.
"This year, the government created history by disallowing even Jumat-ul-Vida (last Friday of Ramadhan) prayers. It was for the first time since Dogra rule that no Jumat-ul-Vida prayers were offered at Jamia and the credit for this direct religious interference goes to the present PDP-BJP regime," a Jamia Auqaf spokesman said.
Angry over the frequent curbs and sealing of Jamia Masjid on Fridays, the chairman Hurriyat Conference (M) Mirwaiz Umar Farooq took to his twitter handle and wrote.
"@MehboobaMufti following the path, rather breaking the record of her predecessors by disallowing Muslims from offering Friday prayers and imposing restrictions in #ShareKhaas!"
In a statement issued here, Mirwaiz strongly denounced the imposition of curbs in majority of Downtown areas of Srinagar and condemned the government led by Mehbooba for "being anti-Muslim" and accused it of "crossing all limits of repression by creating a history of barring Friday prayers at Jamia Masjid for the 18th Friday this year."
"The government ironically is led by a Muslim, (but) is completely indifferent towards the religious practices and sentiments of the community in order to please its masters to stay in power and hence is breaking all records of suppression and repression," he said.