Biswa Ijtema's second phase begins today on banks of Turag in Tongi
Lakhs of devotees from home and abroad are scheduled to arrive on the banks of the Turag in Tongi today amidst an ongoing blockade of the BNP-led 20-party alliance marking the beginning of the second phase of Biswa Ijtema, the largest congregation of Muslims after hajj.
Carrying winter clothes, blankets and cooking utensils, tens of thousands of the faithful from the remaining 32 of the country's 64 districts have already gathered till Thursday night seeking divine blessings.
Arriving with 29 others, Mohammad Abul Kalam of Comilla said despite the apprehensions over safety, they managed to arrive on Wednesday at the three-day event, scheduled to conclude on January 18 following the final supplication, Akheri Munajat. The first phase was held from January 9 to 11.
Obliquely referring to BNP-Jamaat-e-Islami, State Minister for Home Asaduzzaman Khan Kamal at a views-exchange meeting in the capital yesterday said,“According to detective reports, they wanted to do something in the last Ijtema. But we were alert. We will also remain alert now so that they can not create such a situation.”
Gazipur Superintendent of Police Md Harun Or Rashid said they intensified security measures, arranged in five tiers, compared to the first phase and strengthened traffic management.
All preparations are almost complete with thousands of volunteers working round the clock to prepare the 160-acre venue while Bangladesh Road Transport Corporation and Bangladesh Railway have arranged special services.
Tablig Jamaat has been organising the event since 1946.
The Ijtema features sermons on fundamental issues of Tablig and prayers for spiritual adulation, exaltation and welfare of the Muslim community.