First phase of Ijtema begins
The first phase of Bishwa Ijtema, the second largest congregation of Muslims after Hajj, began on the bank of the Turag River at Tongi after Fajar prayers on Friday.
Thousands of Muslim devotees from 16 districts of the country have already thronged the venue to take part in the religious congregation. Devotees from 135 countries will also participate in the Ijtema.
Police have taken a five-tier security measure for the Bishwa Ijtema to ensure overall security.
Around 50 CCTVs have been installed there to monitor the Ijtema ground and the adjoining areas, he said. Earlier, there had been a hiccup over the joining of Indian scholar Maulana Saad Kandhalvi in the first phase of the Bishwa Ijtema. In 1920, Indian Islamist scholar Mohammad Illias Kandhalvi started a reformist movement, Tabligh Jamaat. The movement is aimed at propagating values of Islam and therefore refrains from discussing politics.
It is now the largest organisation of Sunni Muslims in the Indian subcontinent. Its headquarters, referred to as the Markaz, is based in New Delhi. Its operations are conducted through 13-member central council, called the Nezamuddin.