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Indian state bars Kashmiri Muslims from offering Shab-e-Barat prayers in Jamia mosque in Srinagar

On March 7th, Indian authorities barred Shab-e-Barat (Night of Repentance) congregational prayers at the Jamia mosque in Kashmir, the most prominent mosque in the valley that has been the center of people’s religious activities for centuries. The Indian officials locked the gates and placed military there, preventing thousands of Kashmiri Muslims from praying at the main mosque of the region.

This isn’t the first time the Indian state has curbed religious freedoms of Kashmiris, especially in relation to the Jamia mosque. Kashmiri pro-freedom and religious leader, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq (Chief Religious Preacher of Kashmir), has been barred from leading more than 180 consecutive Friday prayers in the historical and prominent Jamia mosque.

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