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Resilience and Faith: Community Gathers for Prayers at Fire-Ravaged Bazar Masjid

The historic Bazar Masjid, renowned for its immense religious significance, has witnessed a remarkable turnout of devotees for Friday congregational prayers despite being reduced to ashes in a massive blaze earlier this week. The fire, which broke out on Monday, caused extensive damage, yet the community’s resilience was evident as they gathered to offer prayers amidst the ruins.

Despite the scorching heat and the absence of essential infrastructure such as the roof, windows, and doors, a large number of people attended the prayers. The local community, along with the Masjid management, had made temporary arrangements after cleaning the vicinity, allowing the congregants to pray in an open space. Special prayers were offered for those affected by the fire, highlighting the community’s unity in the face of adversity.

The Kashmir News Observer reported a special fundraising appeal during the sermon, aimed at rebuilding the historic Bazar Masjid and the houses destroyed in the devastating fire. A senior functionary of the Masjid emphasized the themes of unity and trial in the sermon, praying for divine assistance in overcoming the calamity. The community’s response was a testament to their collective strength and faith.

The Bohri Kadal fire earlier this week caused extensive damage, reducing properties worth crores to ashes and engulfing the century-old Bazar Masjid in downtown Srinagar. The fire left the community in deep shock and grief, as the mosque had been an iconic center for Islamic learning and a pillar of the community for decades.

Local resident Amaan recounted the historical significance of the Bazar Masjid, which was built around 1920 and had the capacity to hold over 2,400 worshippers. It had long been revered for its role in Islamic education, with respected scholars like Moulana Ghulam Nabi Mubarakpuri delivering early Islamic teachings and sermons there. The mosque also housed an Islamic seminary where many students pursued religious studies.

The fire, which quickly spread through the mosque and surrounding area, resulted in the destruction of the Masjid, three shopping complexes, and over ten nearby houses. Despite the efforts of firefighters, the scene was chaotic and heartbreaking, as residents and business owners watched helplessly while the flames consumed their beloved mosque and livelihoods.

Imran Ahmad, another local resident, expressed his deep sorrow and grief, describing the Bazar Masjid as not just a place of worship but a symbol of their heritage and a center for learning. The loss felt by the community was profound, with many seeing the destruction of the Masjid as losing a part of their soul.

However, the resolve of the residents to restore the Bazar Masjid to its former glory remains strong. Driven by their deep emotional connection and commitment to preserving its legacy, the community is determined to rebuild the mosque, ensuring that it continues to serve as a beacon of faith and learning for future generations.

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