Ashura processions have begun all around the country to mark the martyrdom of Imam Hussain (RA) and his companions at Karbala, Iraq on Muharram 10.
Cellular and internet services have begun to be suspended in Karachi, Jacobabad, Shikarpur, Kashmore, Khairpur, Haripur, DI Khan and Lakki Marwat, among other areas.
Meanwhile, the motorcycle pillion riding ban is still in place in Karachi, Peshawar and Quetta whereas the metro bus in Islamabad and Rawalpindi will also remain non-operational today.
In Karachi, the main jaloos (procession) began in Nishtar Park with a majlis (address) recited by Allama Shahenshah Hussain Naqvi.
The procession will then proceed to Numaish Chowrangi, from where it will follow MA Jinnah Road towards Regal Chowk, and pause at Tibet Centre from Zuhr prayers.
Following this, the procession will head towards Radio Pakistan, and conclude at Irania Hussainia Imambargah.
Tight security has been planned throughout the metropolis with over 6,000 personnel deployed along with a heavy contingent of Rangers.
Snipers have been stationed in balconies of the buildings lining the procession’s traditional route as well as on rooftops of skyscrapers, from where security officers will have an eagle’s eye point-of-view of the procession.
With regard to further security and safety inside of the procession, followers and mourners will be required to enter via walk-through gates, installed with metal detectors.
In Rawalpindi, the main Ashura procession will start at 11am from Imambargah Ashiq Hussain.
According to the police, 7,000 police personnel, as well as paramilitary forces, have been deployed for the event.
In Lahore, the Ashura procession began with the traditional majlis at Nisar Havel. It will then proceed through narrow alleyways of the ‘old city’ and conclude in the evening at Imambargah Karbala Gamay Shah.