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October 19, 2019

Devotees flock to Data Darbar as Urs celebrations begin


October 19, 2019

LAHORE:Three-day celebrations of the 976th annual Urs of Hazrat Ali bin Usman Hajveri popularly known as Data Ganj Bakhsh began here Friday led by Provincial Minister for Auqaf and Religious Affairs, Saeedul Hasan Shah while other officials and elite were also present.

The formal inauguration of the festivities was conducted by Chief Minister Usman Buzdar by laying floral wreath and inaugurating the milk Sabeel at the shrine of the 10th century saint who was among the pioneers of preaching and spreading Islam in the sub-continent, particularly in Punjab. The inauguration followed by an international Qirat competition where noted Qaris coming from different parts of the country and world beautifully rendered verses of Holy Quran.

After laying the wreath, special prayers were offered for the solidarity and security of the country. As per tradition, milk-sellers brought thousands of litres of milk as a donation for the Sabeel which was distributed among the devotees and visitors. Thousands of devotees and visitors from all parts of the country came to witness the Urs and offered special prayers.

Talking to the journalists, the chief minister said Islam in the sub-continent was spread through the Sufis and saints, and the real objective of country’s creation could only be achieved by following their teachings. He urged the countrymen to follow into the footsteps of the great Sufi saint Data Ganj Bakhsh in order to materialise the dream of Allama Iqbal and Quaid-e-Azam. He expressed hope that the day was not far when Pakistan would achieve the goals for which it was created and would shine prominently among the comity of the world countries.

Talking to media, Auqaf Minister Saeedul Hasan Shah said the teachings of Hazrat Data Ganj Bakhsh are a beacon light for the Muslims. He said the best arrangements have been made for the devotees on Urs and foolproof security arrangements made for the protection of devotees. He said that special care has been taken for providing food to devotees and langer is also being distributed by the government. He said bomb disposal squads would also be present all the time for coping with any emergency situation. Besides, special plan has been made for smooth flow of traffic on the occasion, he added. TheLahore Parking Company has announced providing free round-the-clock parking for the devotees and visitors at four places near the shrine. These places are, Central Model School, TB Hospital, Minar-e-Pakistan and Mohni Road. Besides the minister of religious affairs and Aquaf which allocated Rs10 million for food and security, several philanthropists, few large organisations, including Al-Mustafa welfare organisation, also arranged free food camps for the visitors.

During the Urs ceremonies, various seminars of preachers, spiritual gatherings, Qirat and Naat competitions debate contests, seminars on Tasawwuf and spiritualism, lectures by religious scholars etc will be held.

A large number of Ulema, Mashaikhs, spiritual leaders and Gaddi Nasheens from all over the country will participate in the congregations. These gatherings will be presided over by noted personalities like Syed Ahmad Ashraf Shah, Ghulam Qutubuddin, Nazeer Ali Shah and Baqar Ali Shah.

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