Local administration has sought three weeks to stop the practice, says VHP leader
Vishwa Hindu Parishad leader Surender Jain claimed on Friday that the local administration had agreed that offering of namaz in the open was illegal and promised to gradually put an end to the practice in the next few weeks.
He was speaking to media persons on the sidelines of “Govardhan Puja” held at Sector 12A by Hindu right-wing groups in protest against the offering of Jumma Namaz at the site. Bharatiya Janata Party leader Kapil Mishra and Surajpal Ammu were also present.
Muslim community representative Altaf Ahmad said community members decided not to hold namaz at three sites — Sector 12, Sector 47 and Sector 18 — in view of the “Govardhan Puja” programme and as advised by the police. The namaz was peacefully held in the remaining designated sites, but Mr. Ahmad claimed that “there was a lot of fear, and Muslims were careful not to have any sort of confrontation with vigilante groups”.
Mr. Jain claimed the designation of 37 places for namaz three years ago was only a one-day arrangement, and the list was not ratified by the administration. “The administration has conceded its mistake and categorically told our office-bearers that offering of namaz in the open is illegal and not allowed. They have requested three weeks’ time to stop it and assured us that the number of public places for namaz will be gradually reduced during this time. But we don’t trust them. It is good if they keep their word, or we will once again take to the streets. But we will not allow the highways to be blocked,” said Mr. Jain, international secretary-general of the group.
Deputy Commissioner, Gurugram, Yash Garg did not respond to the claims of the Hindu right-wing groups.
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