A group of Hindutva men on Monday night stopped Muslims in Uttarakhand’s Haldwani from offering namaz and attacked an Imam.
The Hindutva attack took place around 8.30 pm at a private space in Sarna Kothi, an area dominated by Hindus where the prayers were being held.
Zafar Siddique, a lawyer, owns the property.
Around 50 to 60 men from Hindutva organisation Bajrang Dal disrupted Taraweeh prayers held at night. The mob slapped the Imam and assaulted another worshipper
A case has been filed against those who opposed the prayers under Indian Penal Code Sections 147 (rioting), 323 (voluntarily causing hurt) and 506 (criminal intimidation) based on a complaint from Muslims.
According to a Scroll report, the day before the Hindutva disruption, Siddique received a call from the local police informing him that they had received complaints about the prayers being held on his property. The police said him to meet with the superintendent of police. Later on, the city magistrate sealed three rooms of the building owned by Siddique, citing that the structure was built on “nazul land”, a type of property owned by the state that can be leased out. However, Siddique disputed this claim, stating that Muslims in the area have been holding prayers on the property for the past two decades.
“The basement is a prayer hall where we have been holding namaz throughout the year,” the lawyer said to the news website.