SRINAGAR — The Kashmiri Pandit community living in the Valley today celebrated Ram Navami, the birthday of Lord Ram, with traditional fervor and gaiety.
‘Pooja’ (prayers) was held in temples across the Valley where devotees sought the blessings of Lord Ram and prayed for the return of peace to the region. Hundreds of devotees thronged the Mandirs, where they recited Bhajans and prayed for peace and prosperity.
“The nine-day-long Navratri festival, during which the nine incarnations of Goddess Durga are worshipped, culminates with Ram Navami. Devotees, who have been observing fast throughout Navratra, break the fast on this day by performing ‘Kanya Poojan’ and ‘Sakh Immersion’,” said a devotee.
The devotees also took a Janvi procession from Kathleshwar Mandir Zaindar Mohalla Habba Kadal in which scores of devotees participated. Muslims greeted the Pandits on the occasion and even joined them in a rally taken out by them.
Dancing and chanting sermons, the devotees marched towards Lal Chowk and the procession culminated at Hanuman Mandir Hari Singh High Street here. Large contingents of police were also along the procession.
Giving details about the celebrations, a Kashmiri Pandit preacher said, “Ram Navami is a celebration of nine days, which starts from 1st Navratra.”
“We proudly say that the Kashmiri Pandits who stayed in the Valley in 1990 celebrate religious festivals with the majority community. We feel the separations of our brothers, who are still away from us,” he said, adding that they were overjoyed to see the affection and positive response of Kashmiri Muslims during their march towards the city centre Lal Chowk.