Solakia Eid Congregation

Solakia Eid Congregation one of the biggest Eid congregations (jama't) in Bangladesh held traditionally at Solakia Eidgah Maidan situated on the eastern outskirts of the Kishoreganj district town, and on the northern bank of the river Narasunda.

Solakia Eidgah is said to have been founded by Dewan Haibat Muhammad Khan, a descendant of isa khan Masnad-i-Ala, and its first Eid congregation is known to have been held in 1750 AD. The vast area of land constituting the Eidgah compound was subsequently donated as waqf' property by Dewan Mannan Dad Khan, a descendant of Haibat Muhammad Khan. At present the Eidgah is managed by an waqf Committee headed by a mutawalli (caretaker) nominated from among the descendants of the donor. The Eidgah proper is surrounded by brick walls. There is a pucca mosque on the western extremity of the Eidgah known as Eidgah Mosque.

The Solakia Eid congregation receives musallis from remote places of the district, and even beyond. Controversies are there on the number of assemblage of the musallis in the congregation during the last few years. As per local estimates and the occasional newspaper reports, the number of attendants is claimed to be at least three hundred thousand. But in view of the normal space in the Eidgah Maidan including the outlying areas usually covered by the congregation, the number of assemblage is not likely to exceed two hundred thousand.

The Solakia Eidgah is immensely decorated on the occasion of Eid festivals. The one-kilometre road running from the Kishoregonj railway station to the Eidgah is adorned usually with colourful gates. On Eid Day, the Eidgah Mosque is lavishly decorated, and the premises present a colourful look with multi-devise decoration and lighting all around. Vast arrangement of sound system is made throughout the maidan. A day long mini fair is held on the occasion beside the Eidgah Maidan. [Muazzam Hussain Khan]