Minister Mohd. Ahmadullah had promised the release of Rs. 5 crore for the upkeep of Ashoor Khanas before the 10th of the Muharram month, a promise he has not kept

Despite the State government promising the release of funds for the repair of Ashoor Khanas – places where standards are installed and mourning sessions held during the month of Muharram – not much has been done to honour the word.

Minister for Minority Welfare Mohd. Ahmadullah had on November 10 promised to take up the issue with the authorities concerned and get Rs. 5 crore released for the repair and maintenance of the Ashoor Khanas.

“The Minister promised to get the money released before the tenth of the Muharram month, but not a single paisa has been granted till now,” said Syed Hameed Jaffery, president, A.P. Shia Youth Conference.

He alleges that the A.P.State Wakf Board, which is the custodian of most of the Ashoor Khanas, distributed only Rs.4.5 lakh to a few institutions to meet the expenses of drinking water kiosks.

There are about 140 big and small Ashoor Khanas in the city where Alams (standards) are installed every year and many are in need of urgent repairs. “We have been making representations to the authorities for the last many years, but there has been no sincere move to redress our issues,” Mr. Jaffery complains. Places like Imam Bada at Yakutpura, Bibi-ka-Chasma, Falaknuma, Ashoor Khana Hussaini Alam, Ashoor Khana Koka-ki-tatti and Ashoor Khana Hazrat-e-Abbas, which witness huge turnout during Muharram are devoid of basic facilities.

Wakf Board officials authorised to oversee the release of funds said no separate budget had been earmarked or released for the Ashoorkhanas till now.

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