- Title: Pakistan celebrates Prophet Mohammad's birthday
- Date: 12th December 2016
- Summary: KARACHI, PAKISTAN (DECEMBER 11, 2016) (REUTERS) VARIOUS OF LIGHTS ON BUILDINGS TO MARK MAWLID AL-NABI LIGHTS ON MOSQUE
- Embargoed: 27th December 2016 16:27
- Keywords: Pakistan Mawlid al-Nabi Karachi Prophet Mohammad
- Location: KARACHI, PAKISTAN
- City: KARACHI, PAKISTAN
- Country: Pakistan
- Reuters ID: LVA0015CKXYDX
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Muslims in the Pakistan capital of Karachi celebrated the religious holiday of Mawlid al-Nabi, the birthday of Islam's Prophet Mohammad, on Monday (December 12) and Sunday evening (December 11).
Worshippers gathered at mosques and on illuminated streets to mark the holiday and marched in processions waving flags and banners.
Mawlid is a public holiday in Pakistan which falls on December 12, during the third month of the Islamic calendar, called Rabi' al-Awwal.
Preparations for the festivities begin days before the event, but reach a climax on the eve of Mawlid.
Streets, mosques and buildings are lit up to celebrate the Prophet's birthday and mosques are filled with worshippers during the night.
"We ought to celebrate the 12th of Rabi' al-Awwal with joy and fervour like we celebrate the two Eids every year. Prophet Mohammad peace be upon him is our Prophet and beloved person of Allah. Hence we should celebrate his birth with joy," said worshipper Mohammad Farhan.
Throughout the day, congregations are held and processions take place across Pakistan, with one of the biggest passing through Karachi.
Sweets and food are distributed during the processions.
"We fast on this day, distribute free meals and sherbat (soft drinks). We also pray to Allah to raise the place of the Prophet, peace be upon him, in heaven," said Abdul Qadir, a participant in the procession.
Strict security was in place in Karachi, with police guarding mosques and the procession route.
The Prophet's birthday is marked by Muslims around the world.
Although celebrations vary according to local traditions, cities are often brightly decorated and many people hand out sweets and food to children and those in need.
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