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The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Three lakh march for Prophet

Fateha Doaz Daham — the birth anniversary of Prophet Mohammad — was celebrated with religious fervour in the steel city on Friday as over 3 lakh people took part in a massive procession that challenged crowd control skills of traffic police but went off peacefully.

The faithful, including children, marched from places like Jugsalai, Parsudih, Makdhampur, Telco, Barinagar, Golmuri, Shastrinagar, Kadma, Bhalubasa, Agrico, Mango, Azadnagar, Kapali and Jawaharnagar and converged at Dhatkidih Community Centre Maidan in Bistupur under the banner of Tanzamee Alha Sunnat-o-Jamaat, a united front of religious outfits.

An 11-year-old boy, who was riding pillion, was however injured when the two-wheeler was hit by another biker near Keenan Stadium on Straight Mile Road in the middle of a procession from Aam Bagaan toward Dhatkidih.

A resident of Jugsalai, Mohammad Israr was rushed to MGM Medical College and Hospital.

Devotees from Mango and Azadnagar had assembled at Aam Bagan ground before moving to Dhatkidih, while others came to Dhatkidih directly.

As they used decorated trucks and trailers beside cars and two-wheelers, vehicular movement on major roads was disrupted for four hours from 8am. Though the East Singhbhum district administration had deployed additional police forces, including Rapid Action Forces at strategic locations, the police had a difficult time in managing the sea of people.

The major roads where vehicular traffic was affected were Mango-Sakchi Road, Golmuri-Sakchi Road, Jugsalai-Bistupur Road, Sakchi-Kadma Road and Kadma-Bistupur Road.

Senior superintendent of police Akhilesh Kumar Jha continued to patrol the major areas through which the processions passed.

“The religious procession taken out in the city to mark the birth anniversary of Prophet Mohammad was peaceful. No untoward incident was reported from any part of the city,” he said.

Interestingly, while a section of revellers was crossing the Jugsalai level crossing a passenger train had to halt temporarily. The train coming from the direction of Adityapur resumed its journey only after the procession had passed.

The congregation at Dhatkidih Community Centre was converted to a meeting, which was addressed by religious leaders like Zia-ul Mustafa, Salauddin Nijam and Hidayatullah Khan.

Salauddin stressed the need for discipline among young women and girls, and also spoke against foeticide. Another speaker called upon the people, especially girls, to take the guidance of elders at home and outside.