Tuesday, June 18, 2024


Dhaka Tribune

First phase of Biswa Ijtema begins today

Update : 07 Jan 2016, 08:43 PM

With religious sermons by Islamic scholars after Fazr prayers, the first phase of Biswa Ijtema is set to  commence today on the banks of Turag River in Tongi.

Ignoring yesterday’s countrywide hartal enforced by Jamaat-e-Islami, scores of Muslims from 17 districts of the country has already amassed at the venue to perform Ijtema, the second largest congregation for Muslims after the Hajj.

The 160 acre land was already full of devotees although the organisers divided the Ijtema in four phases for the first time this year.

Devotees were seen coming to the venue on buses, trucks, cars and pickup vans along with their necessities. Golam Salayek, who came from Madaripur, expressed his anger over Jamaat for giving hartal just a day before the Ijtema. He said BNP and Jamaat did the same last year that created problems for devotees.

Organisers said that the local devotees will have to cook and arrange their food by themselves but special steps have been taken to provide food for the foreign devotees.

Gias Uddin, one of the organiser, told the Dhaka Tribune that nearly 20,000 foreign devotees have already reached the venue and hopefully some more would join in the coming days.

Meanwhile, Religious Minister Prof Motiur Rahman yesterday inaugurated a free medical camp at the venue organised by Hamdard.

Apart from that, government and private organisations have set up 54 medical camps around the Ijtema field to provide treatment to the devotees.

Five control rooms have also been set up to assist the devotees, one by city corporation, one by district administration, one by Rapid Action Battalion, one by police and one by Ansar members. A total of 14 watch towers – nine by RAB and five by police – have been set up around the Ijtema ground.

About security steps, Gazipur Police Superintendent Harun-or Rashid told the Dhaka Tribune that all necessary steps have been taken to ensure security of devotees and nearly 12,000 police members are stationed around the venue.

The first phase of Ijtema will end on January 10 and the second phase will begin on January 15, ending on January 17. 

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