Mirwaiz Farooq
social media account of Mirwaiz Farooq

In a significant development, Hurriyat Conference chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq on Friday urged displaced Kashmiri Pandits to return to their homeland to rebuild the bonds of brotherhood and communal harmony.

Addressing Friday's congregation at the Jamia Masjid in Srinagar, Mirwaiz Omar Farooq called for reconciliation and rebuilding of broken bonds.

As thousands of displaced Kashmiri Pandits gathered Mela Kheer Bhawani at Tulmulla, Ganderbal to pay their obeisance on the auspicious occasion of Jyeshth Ashtami Pooja, Mirwaiz seized this opportunity to give a message to the displaced community. He extended his felicitations to the Kashmiri Pandit community on the occasion of Mela Kheer Bhawani.

The Mirwaiz said that being part and parcel of the Kashmiri society, Kashmir Pandits should return to their homeland which awaits them.

"Kashmir is their homeland, they should return to their native place to strengthen the bond of brotherhood and communal harmony", he said.

"On the auspicious occasion of Mela Kheer Bhawani, I would like to felicitate our Kashmiri Pandit community. I once again urged them to return to their homeland which awaits them and live here as they did in the past in our common and shared heritage. It is time to reconcile and rebuild the broken bonds. We owe it to our next generation," he said.

Kheer Bhawani temple

Over 30,000 Kashmir Pandits offer prayers at Mata Kheer Bhawani

Thousands of Kashmiri Pandits paid their respects at the Mata Kheer Bhawani temple in Tulmulla, central Kashmir's Ganderbal district. Mela Kheer Bhawani, an annual event dedicated to Rangya Devi, is also celebrated in other shrines and temples across Jammu and Kashmir to mark 'Zyeth Atham' or 'Jyeshtha Ashtami'.

On the auspicious occasion of Jyeshtha Ashtami, Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha laid the foundation stone for Yatri Bhawan at Mata Kheer Bhawani Temple, Tulmulla, Ganderbal.
The Lt Governor paid obeisance to Mata Kheer Bhawani and prayed for peace, prosperity, happiness, and well-being of one and all. He interacted with the devotees and extended his heartiest greetings on the auspicious occasion.

LG Manoj Sinha

Addressing the media persons, the Lt Governor reiterated the commitment of the UT Administration to augment the facilities for the devotees of Mata Kheer Bhawani.

He said the Yatri Bhawan, to be constructed at a cost of Rs 3.85 crore, will enhance the pilgrimage experience by offering comforting lodging and sanitation facilities. We are expecting to complete the Bhawan in the next 8 months and it will accommodate 1000 pilgrims, he added.

He said, over 30,000 devotees paid obeisance at Mela Kheer Bhawani this year. Around 200 buses have arrived from Jammu and the administration and citizens have ensured the best possible facilities for the devotees, the Lt Governor said.

Mirwaiz hails police for taking action on Dal Lak liquor-consuming case

Mirwaiz Omar Farooq appreciated the authorities for taking strict action against those tourists who were allegedly consuming liquor in a Shikra in Dal Lake.

Addressing a recent incident where two people allegedly consumed liquor during a Shikara ride in Dal Lake, the Hurriyat chairman expressed shock. While authorities have taken action, he stressed that preventing such incidents is a collective responsibility.

As a tourist destination, Kashmir must uphold its ethos based on Islamic values and principles, especially among those associated with tourism.

Mirwaiz Farooq also demanded an investigation into the death of a youth allegedly in police custody in Pulwama district. He believes that accountability is essential to maintain trust and prevent further divisions.