In a disturbing incident, a 55-year-old Muslim man, who died of cardiac arrest was denied a burial place in at least six Muslim graveyards in Telangana’s Rangareddy district, claiming that deceased was an outsider and also on suspicion that he was a coronavirus patient.
However, two Hindu men from the area, Sandeep and Shekar, stepped up to help the grieving family and arranged a place to bury the man in a Hindu cremation ground.
According to reports, Mohammed Khaja Miyan who had moved to Gandamguda in Rangareddy district nearly 10 years ago, had died due to heart attack on May 22 at his residence.
The family members revealed that said Khaja Miyan was refused burial by mutawallis (caretakers of graveyards) in six graveyards, who first said that the deceased’s family were non-locals and then claimed that Khaja may have died from coronavirus. The mutawallis said they did not want to take a chance by giving burial space the deceased.
Finally, he was eventually laid to rest at the Hindu cremation ground with the help of two local young men, Sandeep and Sekhar.
“We made rounds from one graveyard to the other before we eventually gave up hope of giving my dad a proper burial,” said his son Mohammed Basha. He added that the family went to at least six different graveyards in a hope to get a place for their father.
Similar incident in Mallapur
In a similar incident, a caretaker of a graveyard at Mallapur also refused to allow the burial of another Muslim person claiming the deceased was non-local.
However, the relatives of the deceased Saleemuddin Siddiqui met local Muslim leaders of Congress party, who later arranged the burial in a Muslim graveyard in another area.
Telangana Waqf Board threatens action against mutawallis
Following these incidents, Telangana State Waqf Board has warned of serious criminal actions against the managing committees and caretakers of graveyards if they do not allow the burial of Muslim bodies on any ground.
Mohammed Saleem, the Chairman of Telangana Waqf Board, said that they have sent teams to the graveyards which denied burial place to deceased Muslims.
Expressing his anger over the incident in which a Muslim had to be buried in Hindu cremation ground, Saleem said that he has it made clear to the managing committees against denying a place for burial even if the someone died of coronavirus or was a non-local or a traveller.
He stated that the burials grounds are not the personal properties of the caretakers and they cannot deny burial to any Muslim.