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    Foreign envoys visit Hazratbal shrine


    Srinagar, February 17: Foreign envoys who are on a two-day visit to Jammu and Kashmir, on Wednesday visited Hazratbal shrine, the holiest and the only domed mosque in Srinagar.

    Sources said the envoys were received by the Imams of the shrine and were briefed on its historical significance as the holy relic of revered Prophet Muhammad is preserved in the mosque.

    The historical mosque, dating back to 17th century, is an epitome of love and devotion of Muslims for the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), whose Moi-e-Muqqadas, the sacred hair from his beard is preserved here.

    The holy shrine is frequented by thousands of locals for mass prayers and experiences an influx of visitors on special occasions when holy relics are displayed.

    The sources said the visit also provided envoys an opportunity to interact and hear directly from the general public and their local level people's representatives on the functioning and empowerment of grassroots democratic institutions, devolution of power, developmental activities, local issues and grievance redress mechanisms.

    Twenty-four foreign envoys - from Chile, Brazil, Cuba, Bolivia, Estonia, Finland, France, Ireland, Netherlands, Portugal, Belgium, Spain, Sweden, Italy, Bangladesh, Malawi, Eritrea, Cote d'Ivoire, Ghana, Senegal, Malaysia, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan and the European Union - are on a visit to Jammu and Kashmir.

    The visit of foreign envoys has come in the backdrop of District Development Council polls, which saw huge participation and restoration of 4G mobile internet in the entire region after 18 months, which many see as a return of full normalcy in the Union Territory.

    This is the first visit by foreign diplomats to Jammu and Kashmir since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. Two batches of foreign diplomats had visited J-K in January and February last year after the abrogation of Article 370 in August 2019. (ANI)

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