Srinagar, Oct 14: The Eid-ul-Fitr, marking the end of the Islamic fasting month of Ramzan, was celebrated with due solemnity and religious fervour across the Kashmir valley today.
Muslims in large numbers offered special Eid prayers in various mosques and shrines amid pleasant weather.
The main congregations in the summer capital of Jammu and Kashmir were held at Eidgah grounds and the historic Hazratbal shrine, housing the holy relic of the Prophet Mohammad.
It was after nearly 20 years that Eid prayers were offered at Eidgah grounds in the old city here.
Reports of huge congregations have been received from all district headquarters, towns and villages of the Kashmir valley and the Ladakh division, including Kargil district.
Children, in colourful new dresses, exchanged gifts and visited their relatives and received Eidi (gifts mainly in cash) from their elders. Security forces were also seen greeting Muslims near their bunkers and on the roads.
Jammu and Kashmir Governor Lt Gen (Retd) S K Sinha, Chief Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad, former Chief Ministers Mufti Mohammad Sayeed and Farooq Abdullah, National Conference Chief Omar Abdullah and Peoples Democratic Party President Mehbooba Mufti, CPI(M) leader Mohammad Yousuf Tarigami, Legislative Assembly Speaker Tara Chand, Legislative Council Chairman Ghulam Nabi Lone, the entire Council of Ministers have greeted the people on Eid-ul-Fitr.
Separatist leaders also greeted the people on the occasion. In his message, the Governor said Eid marked the culmination of the pious month of Ramzan which highlights the values of patience, self-restraint, tolerance and austerity.
The holy month also improves the quality of mind, promotes feeling of compassion and brotherhood besides respect for others and reinforces faith in the Almighty, he added.
Gen Sinha extended his best wishes to the people and prayed for peace and tranquility in the state. ''May this Eid herald an era of joy and happiness in every home,'' he prayed.
In his message, Mr Azad urged the people to share the joy of the auspicious occasion with economically less privileged sections of the population.
He said Eid-ul-Fitr is a special gift of Allah to those who keep month long fast and engage themselves in prayers and spiritual cleanliness as per His commandments.
On the culmination of Ramzan, Eid is the occasion to celebrate Allah's blessings that bring limitless happiness and contentment to Muslims, Mr Azad added.
Reminding their responsibilities to the well off people while celebrating Eid, the Chief Minister asked them to spare a thought for poor and destitute and include them in the celebrations.
''By caring for these poor and destitute and avoiding extravagance and show off, we can achieve the real bliss of Eid,'' he said and hoped that the auspicious day would bring lasting peace, prosperity and progress to Jammu and Kashmir and its people.