The popular movement against namaz at public places at Gurugram in Haryana is leaping from one destination to another as in Sector 37 local residents protested after a large number of Muslims turned at a public ground to offer Friday namaz on November 19.
The ground is situated at Khansda village where commercial vehicles are parked besides local youths play cricket here. Residents of Khansda alleged that last Friday Muslims had misbehaved with boys of the village who were playing cricket on the ground. Hence, they will not allow any illegal occupation of the ground of their village.
As Muslims came to offer namaz, youths playing cricket refused to vacate the ground of their village. They objected public places are occupied to offer namaz despite people facing problems. The deadlock continued for around one hour when local police of Sector 10 and Sector 37 reached and took them to the police station at Sector 10 to resolve the matter through negotiation.
However, the namaz was offered here later on, but, youths are understood to have told the police that from the next Friday they would not allow their ground to be used for purpose of namaz. They also told police and Muslims that no namaz would be allowed without valid permission.
A local news channel Gurugram News interviewed some youths of the village who opposed the namaz at the playground of their village.
“On every holiday we come to this ground to play cricket. From the morning we were playing cricket. They (Muslims) started arriving at the ground at 12 in the afternoon and in less than an hour around 1000 Muslims assembled here. They put their mats on the ground and started offering namaz. They have mosques, rooms and other places where they can offer namaz. But for us, this is the only ground. We request them to offer namaz at mosques and rooms,” said Sachin Yadav a local resident.
He said that police instead of asking Muslims to go to some other places for the namaz persuaded villagers to vacate the ground.
Local residents had made up their mind to oppose offering of namaz in public place
Mohit Raghav another local resident said that last Friday when they were playing Muslims came and they started laying wires and other things. “This is our village and they have come here and they don’t have the courtesy to ask us to vacate the ground. They just started,” said Raghav. Residents alleged that last Friday Muslims had thrashed and threatened boys playing cricket here. Sundar Chauhan from Khansda village said that it made them angry that boys of the village were misbehaved and they were stopped. “Police stopped us from playing today. But we will not allow namaz from the next week if they don’t valid permission,” said Chauhan.
One Haji Shahzad of Muslim Ekta Manch claimed that Khandsa ground was on the list of 20 places agreed upon by the local administration for Muslims to offer namaz. He alleged that the police instead of taking action was trying to suppress the matter.
Shahzad said that over 1000 Muslims offer prayers on this ground and when they reached the ground youths refused to vacate and threatened to disrupt their namaz.
Gurugram residents push back against encroachment of public places for namaz
Opposition to illegal occupation of public places by Muslim to offer their religious prayers is steadily gaining momentum. For weeks now, conscientious locals have pushed back against Muslims who have resorted to indulging in communal praying in public places instead of designated places of worship. Last week, as the residents in Gurugram continued their protest against Muslims offering Namaz at open spaces, some of them today took the matter into their own hands to prevent the same.
After the police declined to intervene and stop namaz at public places despite opposition from the locals, some activists spread cow dung cakes on the ground at Gurugram’s Sector 12A, which prevented the Muslims from offering their Friday prayers there.