PESHAWAR: The Muharram 9 mourning processions were held peacefully here on Monday amid tight security by the police department, which deployed more than 11,000 personnel.
Mobile service was suspended in parts of provincial capital on Monday afternoon and will remain so on Ashura today (Tuesday).
The Peshawar Bus Rapid Transit service was also suspended for Monday and Tuesday.
A procession was taken out from the Saddar Road Imamia Hall Imambargah in Peshawar cantonment area. It began at around 10am and took the traditional route before ending peacefully.
Mobile, BRT service suspended
Another procession began from the Imambargah Sakhi Munawar Shah in Imamia Colony, Gulbahar, and passed through the Grand Trunk Road in Hashtnagri area amid strict security checks.
The police sealed off the Saddar Bazaar and all roads leading to it with tents, while scores of personnel were deployed on the nearby roads and procession routes.
One of the GT Road lanes was closed in the afternoon with the police diverting traffic to the open lanes. The roads and streets along the procession route were closed with barbed wires and tents. The police personnel were deployed in large numbers for the protection of mourners.
More than a dozen Ashura processions will be taken out from imambargahs in the provincial capital today (Tuesday). They will use traditional routes. However, most processions will be held in the old city amid tight security by the police. Majalis will take place in several imambargahs at night.
The police said they had deployed 11,500 personnel in the city for Muharram processions.
In a statement, they said they had provided ‘full’ security to 62 imambargahs and all mosques in the city.
According to police, 116 processions will be taken out in the city during Muharram.
They said bomb disposal unit and sniffer dogs were used to check procession routes and other sensitive places, while 250 CCTV cameras have been installed to monitor imambargahs, procession routes and majalis.
The police have set up the ‘supreme command post’ at the Kohati Chowk and six sub-posts in old city and other parts of the capital for the coordination of security arrangements.
They said all mourning processions were provided with three layered security and the mourners would pass through them before reaching the respective imambargahs and processions.
The police said snipers had been deployed on high-rise buildings across the city, while entry and exit points of the city were being closely monitored.
Meanwhile, chief secretary Dr Shahzad Bangash on Monday visited the supreme command post in Kohati Chowk.
Home secretary Khushal Khan briefed him about the overall security situation in the city and said law-enforcement agencies were closely monitoring mourning processions in 14 districts of the province.
The secretary also said Section 144 had been imposed in those districts.
Our Dera Ismail Khan correspondent adds: The Muharram 9 processions were held in the district peacefully amid tight security.
The main procession was taken out from Imambargah Bammun Shah at 7am. It passed the traditional route and ended at Jamia Masjid Lato Faqir at 12pm. Processions from other imambargahs joined it at different points. The participants recitednohaand flagellated themselves. Sherbet and meals were distributed to them.
Another procession was taken out near Liaquat Park after 2pm and ended at Imambargah Samandah at around 4pm.
Meanwhile, a 72 feet tall alam was installed at the Imambargah Kotli Imam Hussain, the largest in the district.
Published in Dawn, August 9th, 2022