The sacrifices Hazrat Imam Husain (RA) and his companions in Karbala were commemorated with due reverence in various events in Karachi on the occasion of Chehlum on Saturday.
Various processions were held in memory of the Karbala martyrs, during which religious scholars and participants paid homage to Hazrat Imam Hussain (RA) and his companions and recited Marsiya.
Minor processions were held in different parts of Karachi that later joined the main procession, which started from the Nishtar Park after Majlis-e-Aza.
A large number of people, including women and children, attended Majlis-e-Aza, following which the mourners moved out of the park and offered the Zohrain prayers.
The main procession started at 1pm. It passed through its traditional route of Sir Shahnawaz Bhutto Road, Mehfil-e-Shah-e-Khorasan, MA Jinnah Road, Mansfield Street, Preedy Street and Boulton Market, and culminated at the Hussainian Iranian Imambargah in Kharadar.
In his address to the participants of the main procession, Shia scholar Syed Shahenshah Hussain Naqvi recalled the sacrifices of Hazrat Imam Hussain (RA) and his followers. “Hazrat Imam Hussain (RA) rendered sacrifice for the sake of humanity. The supreme sacrifice of Hazrat Imam Hussain (RA) at Karbala was an example for everyone to learn how to stand firmly against tyranny and injustice,” he said.
“The sacrifice of Imam Hussain (RA) is a clear statement that nothing is above Allah Almighty and Islam. It is the biggest sacrifice in the history of Islam,” he added.
Strict security measures had been ordered by Sindh Inspector General of Police Ghulam Nabi Memon for Chehlum. On Thursday, he directed all the DIGs to ensure extraordinary security arrangements in connection with the religious event and coordinate with the Pakistan Rangers, other law enforcement agencies.
The IGP also issued instructions to the police stations for random checking across Sindh, particularly Karachi. The police stations should strengthen coordination for sharing information for immediate action against criminals, he said.
The provincial police chief said that apart from increasing intelligence gathering, patrolling and picketing at entry and exit points of the city, security measures should also be strengthened for the protection of imambargahs and mosques.
The office of the deputy inspector general of the Karachi Traffic Police had also issued security orders for the Chehlum procession. More than 1,000 traffic police officials and personnel performed their duties. It was mandatory for the vehicles participating in the procession to affix the sticker to the windscreen.
Hundreds of policemen, snipers and officials in plainclothes were deployed to secure the routes of the processions, while mobile phone services also remained suspended along those routes as an additional layer of security.
An Alam procession moved from the Shah-e-Najaf Imambargah on Martin Road to the Nishtar Park, where a Majlis was held before the main procession started.
Special security measures, including a ban on pillion riding, were adopted by the security agencies to avert any untoward incident. All the routes leading towards the routes of the procession were blocked with containers, while the commercial areas in their vicinities were also closed.
A large number of Rangers and police officials along with scouts performed security duties. Security arrangements were also monitored at the command and control room.
A total of 355 police officials, 2,480 head constables, 969 commandos and personnel from the Special Security Unit, 375 officials and personnel from the Rapid Response Force performed the security duty. Apart from the law enforcers, over 5,000 volunteers from Shia scouts organisations also performed security duties. Three hundred CCTV cameras installed at around 72 points were used to monitor the procession. Sharp-shooters were also deployed on the top of high-rises.
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