'Adopt fire protection measures at shrines'
New Delhi: A minority panel on Monday asked the Jammu and Kashmir government to institute adequate measures for fire protection of shrines of historical importance expressing deep sorrow over the gutting of the 200-year-old Sufi shrine of Peer Dastgir Sahib last week.
"The National Commission for Minorities has urged the state government of Jammu and Kashmir to institute adequate measures for fire protection of shrines of historical importance, all of which have wood structures," a release by the Ministry of Minority Affairs said.
The revered shrine in the old city of Srinagar was destroyed in a fire on June 25, triggering protests and clashes that left 50 people including 11 policemen injured.
The relics of the 11th century Muslim preacher, known as Ghaus-ul-Azam among the locals and revered worldwide, were, however, safe as these were retrieved from the fire-proof vault of the wooden shrine which was reduced to ashes. The relics contained a strand of hair from his beard and a skull cap.
"NCM has expressed deep sorrow over the incident of fire which engulfed the 200-year-old Sufi shrine of Peer Dastgir Sahib, a monument of prime religious and historical significance in Srinagar," the release said.