RELIGION IN KASHMIR
The predominant religion in the valley of Kashmir is Islam. Almost 95% of the population practises Islam. No major Muslim ruler invaded the region and Islam spread in the valley as a result of spiritual influence. Islam in Kashmir came through many Sufi saints, who came to the region during 13th century AD. Many shrines have been made in the Sate dedicated to these Sufi saints. The shrines are located throughout the valley. The most important and famous Shrine is the Hazratbal Shrine, located on the banks of the Dal Lake. The sacred hair of Prophet Mohammad (PBUH)
is preserved in the shrine. Among other important shrines include the Chrar-i-Shareef Shrine, Mukhdoom Sahab Shrine
, Khanqah, Dastgeer sahib Shrine. The valley practices a pure form of Sufism, which came here from Iran with the Sufi saints
. Sufi music in the region is among the most famous cultural attractions. There are mainly two sects of Muslims in Kashmir- Sunni’s and Shia, with the former forming the majority.
Apart from Islam, the other religions in the Valley include Hinduism, Sikhism, Christianity and Buddhism. Hindus in the state are known as Kashmiri Pandits. There are a lot of revered Hindu temples in Kashmir valley. The Amarnath Shrine, Khir Bhawani Temple and many other pilgrimage centres are located in region. The largest Gurduwara of Sikhs is located in Saida-Kadal on Lal-chowk Hazratbal road. People of all the religions live peacefully with each other in complete harmony.