Srinagar: Shab-E-Baraat, the revered night of forgiveness, was observed with religious fervour and zeal across Kashmir valley during the intervening night of Sunday and Monday.
As soon as evening fell, religious places, graveyards and houses across Kashmir valley were seen lit up with candles and lights. People also visited the graves of their loved ones and prayed for them on this blessed night. The lighting up of religious places and houses symbolises the reverence of people towards this occasion.
Shab-E-Baraat, which falls ahead of the month of Ramadan, is usually observed during the intervening night of 14 and 15 Shabaan, the 8th month of the Islamic calendar. Often called as the night of forgiveness, the occasion brings an opportunity for Muslims across the globe to have their sins washed away, following which, it is believed, Allah writes their destinies for the coming year after taking into account their past actions.
As such, the religious places of Kashmir valley including mosques and shrines remained abuzz with the celebrations of the blessed occasion during the night. Throughout the night, loud calls of prostrations and prayers echoed from loudspeakers of religious shrines and mosques.
However, this year due to the resurgence of Covid-19 pandemic, the night-long prayers at the historic Jamia Masjid in Srinagar were cancelled. The Ajuman Auqaf Jamia Masjid had said that the Shab-E-Baraat congregation was cancelled in view of guidelines issued by the World Health Organisation (WHO) and medical experts in the wake of the resurgence of Covid-19 cases.
However, other masjids in Srinagar city and elsewhere in the valley observed celebrations with the holding of night-long prayers. Mosques remained fully occupied by large number of believers for offering special prayers and seeking blessings of Almighty Allah.
Religious scholars delivered lectures on the significance of Shab-E-Baraat and its message towards mankind. In addition to this, the scholars also threw light on the life of Prophet Muhammad (SAW) and the path ought to be followed by Muslims in their lives. Largely, the special prayers revolved around seeking Istegfaar (forgiveness) from Allah, for which the blessed occasion of Shab-E-Baraat holds utmost importance.
Last year, the celebrations of Shab-E-Meraj had remained suspended across Kashmir valley owing to the outbreak of Covid-19 pandemic coupled with the strict lockdown.