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Namaz Under Heavy Security at 23 Gurugram Open Spaces After Threats From Right-Wing Groups

Various authorities, including intelligence officers, were asked to list places where Friday namaaz are offered, following which the Gurugram administration on Thursday finalized 23 out of 100 open spaces to deploy security.


Updated:May 12, 2018, 12:05 AM IST
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New Delhi: Friday prayers at 47 sites in Gurugram, including 23 open spaces, went off peacefully on Friday afternoon under the strict watch off a large number of police officers after some right-wing groups had called for a ban on namaz in public.

Those who had come to offer Friday prayers said that the arrangement made by the administration was good but more open spaces are needed to accommodate everyone. The sites where prayers were held included Marble Market in Sikanderpur, Leisure Valley ground parking and the parking in front of IFFCO chowk.

The Haryana had zeroed in on 23 open spaces for the Friday prayer congregation with a duty magistrate each to oversee security. Also, six places in neighbouring Manesar were identified where police was deployed.

"Apart from 23 open spaces, there were roughly 24 mosques where namaaz was offered. A group of duty magistrates were appointed to be present at each of these spots as well to avoid any untoward incident," an officer in Gurugram police said, adding that this is a temporary arrangement which will continue for two weeks.

The officer further said that the "breakthrough" was achieved after talks between the representatives of the Muslim community and the police commissioner. Initially, it was agreed that police will be deployed at 13 open spaces. However, it was later increased to 23.

Last week, Haryana chief minister Manohar Lal Khattar had created a stir after he said that namaaz should be offered in mosques and eidgahs only, and not in open spaces.

The spate of disruptions began on April 20 when a group of Muslim men gathered at a ground to offer Friday prayers but were disrupted by men shouting “Jai Shri Ram”, who asked the namaazis to dismiss.

The video went viral and a week later, on April 26, six men were arrested for violence. Last week, too, there were reports of instances of disruption in various parts of Gurugram.

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| Edited by: Sumedha Kirti
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