Dalits, Muslims Fight Sealing Of Gurgaon Mosque, Hindutva Groups Left Fuming


Following a complaint lodged by locals and Hindutva organisations, the Gurgaon civic body on Wednesday sealed a building which was being used by Muslims to offer prayers.

Now, Dalit rights group Bhim Sena has extended its support to the Muslim Ekta Manch, a group that has locked horns with the administration and the Hindutva group by demanding that the building be reopened for namaz.

"If they don't lift the seal off the building, we will seal all of Gurgaon," Nawab Satpal Panwar of Bhim Sena told HuffPost India.

Rajeev Mittal, chief coordinator of the Sanyukt Hindu Sangharsh Samiti, told HuffPost India that residents of Sheetla Mata Colony in Gurgaon took offence at the azan being heard through loudspeakers on the three-storied building's terrace. He claimed that the Hindutva organisation extended their support only a week after the locals protested and wrote to the district magistrate. "They have illegal water and electricity connections," claimed Mittal.

"They have fit some 3-4 loudspeakers on the building and they are blaring the azan from it. The locals in the area were getting headaches from the sound. So they complained and wanted them to stop," Mittal said.

Shahzad Khan, president of Muslim Ekta Manch, said, "This is a planned attack on Muslims. They find just us and Dalits to stop practicing our religion. Why is that?"

Khan said that after Hindutva organisations started disrupting namaz and protested against reading it in public spaces, they were forced to stop holding prayers in places where people had been gathering for years. "Usually poor labourers used to come to these places for namaz, and they cannot afford to travel long distances. Yet, we stopped holding namaz at several convenient spaces".

Khan added that when the building was being constructed, the administration had been informed that it was for a masjid. "We have documents to prove that," he said.

Mittal, however, alleged that the building was "illegal". "It's a house and it cannot...

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