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2nd phase of Ijtema ends with akheri munajat

Mohammad Ali Jheelon . Gazipur

A train teems with people on their way back home after taking part in Biswa Ijtema at Tongi in Gazipur after akheri munajat on Sunday, the photo was taken at Kuril flyover in Dhaka. — Sanaul HaqueA train teems with people on their way back home after taking part in Biswa Ijtema at Tongi in Gazipur after akheri munajat on Sunday, the photo was taken at Kuril flyover in Dhaka. — Sanaul Haque

Tens of thousands of people, from home and abroad, joined the concluding prayers of the second phase of three-day bishwa ijtema in Tongi on the outskirt of the capital on Sunday seeking divine blessings and peace and prosperity of the country and the Muslim ummah.
The bank of the river Turag, the venue of the ijtema, turned into a human sea and the crowd spilled over to surrounding areas stretching from Joydevpur crossing in Gazipur to Uttara in the capital.
Global Tabligh Jamaat advisory committee member Maulana Jobayerul Hasan, also son of former global Tablig Jamaat amir Enamul Hasan, conducted the concluding prayer amid chant of ‘amin - amin’ that lasted about 17 minutes.
Jobayer sought divine blessings for those Muslims who were being oppressed in different parts of the world.
Following the ijtema, teams of devotees, locals and foreigners, would travel across Bangladesh to preach Islamic ideals.
All roads were filled with seemingly endless rows of people on all modes of vehicles and on foot led to Tongi since pre-dawn on Sunday.
Devotees spread over seven square-kilometre area with many people raising hands on rooftops, vehicles and boats.
Many devotees, however, missed the concluding prayers, akheri munajat, as the prayer began at about 9:55am, although in the earlier it had always been held before zuhr prayer in the afternoon.
Tabligh Jamaat leader Maulana Giasuddin said that the timing of the concluding prayers was advanced to facilitate the devotees to return home smoothly.
Educational institutions, offices and factories adjacent to the venue were closed for Sunday for the concluding prayers.
Gazipur police had diverted vehicular movement to other directions to facilitate the concluding prayers at Bhogra bypass point on Dhaka-Mymensingh highway, at Mirer Bazar point on Dhaka-Tongi-Narsingdi-Sylhet highway and at Ashulia bridge point on Uttara-Ashulia road from 5:00am to 6:00pm.
For the first time, the participants were seen using 3G technology to pave way for their near and dears to join the prayers through video calls. 
The organisers also announced the schedule for next year’s Ijtema after the concluding prayers. The first phase of the next ijtema will take place in January 9-11, 2015 while the second phase in January 16-18, 2015.
Islamic thinkers and Tablig Jamaat leaders delivered sermons on iman, akhlaq and dawah. The sermons were translated in different languages including English, Bengali, Malaya, Tamil, French, Hindi and Urdu.
Nine devotees died on the ijtema venue during the second phase that began on Friday.
The ijtema has been taking place since 1966 in Tongi.
In 1948, it took place at the Haji Camp in Chittagong and was shifted to Shiddhirganj in Narayanganj in 1958. The ijtema venue was shifted to the bank of Turag in Tongi in 1966 and the congregation has been taking place there since then.




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