LAHORE - The sacred month of Moharramul Harram heralding the new year 1431 Hijra in Islamic Calendar, will commence from Saturday (today). Moharram is also the month of mourning and commemoration of the tragedy of Karbala in which the grandson of the Holy Prophet (PBUH), Hazrat Imam Hussain (RA) and his 72 companions laid down their lives to uphold the values of truth, justice, righteousness and piety, enshrined as basic articles in the religion of Islam. The 10th of Moharram (Ashura) will be observed with due reverence and sanctity on December 28 (Monday). In this regard, the government is contemplating to announce four-day of public holidays in government offices on Ashura beginning from Dec 25. The educational institutions will remain closed for ten days also due to winter vacations. The mourning processions started as ulema addressed the majalis meetings in Imambargahs. Meanwhile, the government has made all arrangements to maintain peace in the month. Extra-ordinary security has been made to protect the Imambargahs and routes of mourning processions. Police commandos will be posted at about 80 buildings around the mourning processions. Special cleanliness drive and patch work of dilapidated roads has been launched to keep the areas clean. The encroachments have also been removed while street light rehabilitation has also been done. Ambulances, bomb-disposal squad and first aid post have been set up. A number of NGOs have also set-up dispensaries, drinking water and food stalls for the mourners. Metal detectors will be used to check all entrants of Imambargahs and mourning processions while particulars of persons working in the hotels, restaurants and shops on the route of Zuljinnah are also being recorded. The abandoned buildings are also being checked by the security agencies while the government will impose restriction on pillion riding on 9th and 10th Moharram. A special cell of the Ittehad Bainul Muslimeen has also been set up comprising ulema, community leaders of all sects and senior officials of district administration to maintain sectarian harmony and mutual cooperation. The cell will work round the clock to monitor the measures. The government in a meeting with the ulema exhorted them to maintain sectarian harmony to which they agreed. The ulema at a juma congregation at Badshahi Mosque made a chain of hands for showing solidarity during the month in the presence of Commissioner Lahore Khusro Pervaiz.