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With Puja Plan, Right-Wing Forces Muslims to Skip Friday Prayers at 3 Sites in Gurugram

 

As usual, BJP leader Kapil Mishra makes provocative speech and hails those disrupting Namaz saying they have ‘shown the entire country how it is done’

Team Clarion 

NEW DELHI — As planned, right-wing Hindus organised a ‘Govardhan puja’ event at the designated site of Friday prayer on November 5 at Sector 12 in Gurugram, Haryana, thus forcing Muslims to forgo obligatory weekly prayer.

Friday prayers were also not held at two more designated sites — Sector 47 and Sector-18 because of the same pooja. However, Friday prayers were held at the rest of the designated open sites. Local Muslim leadership had appealed to the community members to “show restraint and walk away in case troublemakers try to provoke or disrupt Namaz at the remaining 36 sites”.

The puja event which started at 11 am was attended by Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Kapil Mishra, the controversial figure blamed for provoking Delhi riots of February 2020. As usual he made a provocative speech and justified the puja event saying that they have gathered to oppose holding prayer on the roads.

He lauded the people of Gurugram for rising up against Namaz saying they have “shown the entire country how it is done, to fight for your rights. This is not the problem of only Gurugram but roads are blocked in other cities as well.”

Mishra said that they will not allow “blocking of roads” for prayer at any cost.

He boasted about how people defied the orders (ban on firecrackers) on Diwali.

He also made reference to Shaheen Bagh where Muslim women blocked a highway for months during a countrywide protest movement against the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA). “They blocked Shaheen Bagh. Did CAA go back,” Mishra asked, amidst chants of “Jai Shree Ram’

The event was organized by Sanyukta Hindu Sangharsh Samiti (SHSS), a body of Hindu nationalist groups including Bajrang Dal, Vishwa Hindu Parishad, Hindu Kranti Dal, Arya Samaj, and Sanatan Dharam.

The right-wing Hindus have been disrupting Namaz at open places designated by the administration in Gurugram for more than a month. Of late they have also mobilised members of a Resident Welfare Association who have made allegations of theft and harassment of women against Muslims. The allegations have been rejected by the police which has said that it is baseless.

Due to lack of a sufficient number of mosques in the area, in 2018 Muslims were allotted 37 sites to offer congregational Friday prayers. Even back then Hindutva supporters opposed and disrupted open Namaz but after police action it stopped.

Now since late September as Muslims again started congregating for weekly prayers, a Hindutva outfit waded in to disrupt Namaz. Since then, they have found more support and administration has also caved in to the pressure and cancelled permission at eight sites.

Meanwhile, as Hindutva supporters held Puja event, the Muslim community decided to cancel Namaz at Sector-12 site.

“We have asked our Muslim Community of Gurugram (who are forced to read their obligatory Juma Namaz at these open sites due to lack of mosques in Gurugram) to show restraint and walk away in case troublemakers try to provoke or disrupt Namaaz at the remaining 36 sites. No reaction or confrontation is required under any kind of provocation,” said Altaf Ahmad, a representative of the community in Gurugram.

“The Muslim Community of Gurugram stands for peace & amity and will do everything in its might to ensure that communal harmony prevails in the city.”

On November 5, Juma Namaz was held at all sites except three — Sector-12, Sector 47 and Sector-18.

Altaf said that since at these three sites, Govardhan Puja was happening “we voluntarily stepped back as the same was advised by Police forces on ground”.

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