At least 2,000 people participated in the main procession to commemorate the martyrdom of Hazrat Ali (RA) on Monday.
The procession started at around 9am from Mubarik Haveli in the Walled City (near Mochi Gate) and ended at the Karbala Gamay Shah at around 6pm.
Several scholars gave speeches on the life of Hazrat Ali (RA).
They also narrated the story of his martyrdom at the hands of Abdur Rehman Ibne Muljim.
Most participants walked barefoot and self-flagellated, beating chests and whipping themselves with chains.
The participants were also carrying a ziarat (replica of Hazrat Ali’s tomb).
Most devotees said the number of participants was less than last year.
They suggested that more people had observed the day staying home or attending a majlis possibly un view of the three suicide blasts at the last year’s procession.
More than 18 people were killed and over a hundred injured in the blasts.
Police officials expressed satisfaction with the security arrangements and the fact that no untoward incident had been reported throughout the day.
They said strict security was ensured for the main procession in light of the last year’s tragedy. No one was allowed to access the procession route without a security check.
Besides the procession, security was also provided at imambargahs and other places where majalis and seminars were arranged in connection with the day.
Major gatherings were held in Mochi Gate, Sada Hussain, Shadman, Model Town, Gulberg, Cavalry Ground and Defence Housing Authority.
Published in The Express Tribune, August 23rd, 2011.
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