Lucknow: Eid al Adha was celebrated with traditional fervour and gaiety across Uttar Pradesh on Friday. The highlight of the celebrations was the joint 'namaaz' (prayer) that was offered for the first time by the Shia and Sunni sects in Lucknow.
Both sides, known for their hostility towards each other and a record of sectarian violence in the old city, were brought together by a religious group - Shia-Sunni Brotherhood.
Sunni clerics led the Eid al Adha namaaz at the Sibtainabad Imambada in Hazratganj in the presence of religious leaders from both sides.
Apart from praying for peace and prosperity of the nation, the Muslims also prayed for peace for the souls who were killed in the stampede near Makkah on Thursday.
Eminent Shia cleric Kalbe Sadiq welcomed the initiative named "Shoulder-to-Shoulder" and said that the move was a befitting response to people who instigated fights and violence between the two sects of Islam.
He said that Muslims should not only encourage peace and brotherhood within the fraternity but also try and include Hindus in it.
Uttar Pradesh Governor Ram Naik and Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav extended their good wishes. Namaaz was offered in Jhansi, Aligarh, Agra, Moradabad, Bareilly, Firozabad, Agra, Kannauj, Kanpur, Etah, Meerut and Rampur.