Akheri Munajat of Ijtema today
The first phase of Biswa Ijtema, the second largest Muslim congregation of the world, concludes today through the Akheri Munajat seeking spiritual wellbeing and welfare of the Muslim Ummah.
The Munajat will be offered by Indian Islamic scholar Mawlana Saad between 10:00am and 11:00am, organisers said.
Hundreds of thousands of Muslims have gathered at the Ijtema venue on the Turag river in Tongi of Gazipur, defying the nonstop blockade enforced by the BNP-led alliance.
Around 5,000 foreigners from 50 countries have joined the three-day long first phase of the Ijtema that started on Friday. The second phase will begin on January 16.
Several devotees yesterday said they defied the blockade as they believed earthly obstacles should not be a barrier to seeking the holy path to Allah.
Gazipur police said they would take additional security measures prior to the Munajat. Around 12,000 law enforcers are already deployed there forming a five-layered security net.
SPECIAL TRANSPORT SERVICES
Bangladesh Railway sources said special train services from Tongi Railway Station will be available on Tongi-Akhaura, Tongi-Comilla and Tongi-Mymensingh routes. All regular trains will stop at Tongi station before and after the Munajat. More than 50 shuttle buses will be operating under special arrangements of the law enforcers.
FIVE DIE ON SECOND DAY
Five devotees died at the Ijtema venue from cardiac arrests and other complications.
The deceased are: Abdus Salam, 50, of Gazipur; Jahangir Alalm Sarker, 65, of Dhaka; Kafil Uddin Mandol, 50, of Natore; and Khairul Kabir, 55, and Riaz Uddin, 52, of Kishoreganj.
Meanwhile, law enforcers picked up 17 people on charges of pick-pocketing and mugging. A mobile court also lodged 10 cases and realised Tk 13,000 in fines for sale of adulterated food.