Eid-ul-Fitr, marking the end of the holy month of Ramadan, was celebrated across Telangana and Andhra Pradesh on Monday with religious fervour and gaiety.
In traditional attire, Muslims in both the Telugu speaking states celebrated the festival by offering the 'Namaz-e-Eid' at Eidgahs or open grounds and mosques.
The Imams in their sermons urged the Muslims to continue the good deeds of Ramadan and lead their lives in accordance with the Quran and Sunnah, the holy life of Prophet Mohammed.
'Dua' (supplication) was also made for unity among Muslims and for peace and harmony in the country and across the world.
Huge congregations were seen at the historic Mir Alam Eidgah, Madannapet Eidgah, Ujale Shah, Balamrai, Makkah Masjid, Public Gardens mosque, hockey grounds, military grounds and Secunderabad Eidgah in the twin cities.
Moulana Hafiz Mohammed Rizwan Qureshi led the prayers at Mir Alam Eidgah.
Before the prayers, Moulana Mohammed Hussamuddin Jaffer Pasha and Moulana Saifullah spoke about the significance and message of Eid.
At the historic Makkah Masjid, Hafiz Mohammed Lateef Ahmed led the prayers.
Police made elaborate security arrangements along with CCTV installations.
Before offering prayers, every Muslim family paid 'Fitra' or charity (a minimum of Rs 100) on behalf of each member as per the Islamic rules so that the poor can also celebrate the festival.
Rich families also paid 'Zakat' or 2.5 per cent of Islamic tax on their wealth to the poor and needy in accordance with one of the basic tenets of Islam.
After the prayers, the people visited relatives and friends to offer greetings.
Guests were treated to 'sheer khorma' (special sweet made of vermicelli, milk and dry fruits) and other dishes.
The Governor of the two states, E.S.L. Narasimhan, Telangana Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao, his Andhra Pradesh counterpart N. Chandrababu Naidu and leaders of various political parties greeted the people on the occasion.
The Telangana Chief Minister has appealed to the people to reflect on communal harmony and religious tolerance and mirror the great 'Ganga-Jamuna tehzeeb' of the state.
He said that the state government organised 'Dawat-e-Iftar' and distributed clothes to the poor during the holy month.
Chandrababu Naidu said that the holy month reinforces the message of love, compassion and universal brotherhood.
He noted that the Andhra Pradesh government has been distributing Ramadan 'tohfa' (gift). The gift pack includes 5 kg of wheat flour, 2 kg of vermicelli, 1 kg of sugar and a packet of ghee.
Muslims constitute 12.43 per cent of Telangana's population of 3.51 crore. They constitute 6.92 per cent of the 5 crore population of Andhra Pradesh.