Members of the Hindutva outfit Bajrang Dal on Saturday stopped Muslims from holding Taraweeh prayer inside a warehouse in Uttar Pradesh’s Moradabad.
Bajrang Dal state president Rohan Saxena and along with a group of Hindu men barged into the godown of a Muslim man named Zakir Hussain in Moradabad’s Lajpat Nagar and stopped Taraweeh, voluntary congregational prayer on Ramadan nights.
In a video that went viral on the internet, Saxena said Hussain started a “new tradition” by holding prayer meetings at his home and he will not allow it. He warned that if the police fail to file a first information report, the Bajarang Dal will hold an agitation.
In a statement, the Moradabad Police said that they received a complaint about the prayer meeting from residents of the city’s Lajpat Nagar area, which has a “Hindu majority/mixed population”.
The meeting was allowed to be held on Saturday in the presence of police, but Muslims of the area have been asked to offer prayers in their homes or religious places, the statement said.
In August last year, 26 Muslims were booked for Namaz at the houses of Two Muslim men in Moradabad, but the charges were later dropped.
UP Police withdrew the FIR after they found the complaint to be “incorrect.” The Moradabad Police said that the “video” provided by the main complainant Chandra Pal Singh is “fudged.” Singh was also a member of the Bajrang Dal.
In another incident, a video of Muslim men offering namaz at the Lulu mall was shared widely by Hindu militant groups on social media. The Hindu nationalist social media handles widely posted Islamophobic comments against the Muslims who offered Namaz and the mall run by MA Yusuf Ali, one of India’s richest Muslims.
The Lucknow Police later filed a case against unknown persons who offered namaz at the city’s mall on July 12, 2022.