Ahmedabad, Feb 26 (UNI) Hundreds of Muslim devotees gathered in a small village about 22 km from here late last night to observe 'khandak', a ritual comprising walking on fire on the last day of Muharram month, to commemorate the 'martyrdom' of Imam Hussain, the grandson of Prophet Mohammad in the battle of Karbala.
About 2,000 devotees, including even children aged four to six years, participated in the ritual.
The burning coals were placed in a two-foot deep and 12 ft long pit dug up for the purpose.
''No one gets injured during the ritual, because our involvement is so deep that we do not regard it as fire but as a trap out which we have to come out,'' Pervez Momeen, one of the volunteers, said.
Mourners wearing black robes with black head strips were seen crying out aloud, beating their chests.
A Moulvi also addressed the gathering giving an account of the killing of Imam Hussain along with his family members and followers by the forces of Yazid, a Muslim ruler at Karbala in Iraq about 1300 years ago after the group had been cut off in the desert and denied food and water.
UNI MMG MJ VD KN1828