Authorities In India Shut 800-Year-Old Mosque In BJP-Ruled State

Authorities In India Shut 800-Year-Old Mosque In BJP-Ruled State
The authorities in an Indian state have forbidden Muslims from praying at an 800-year-old mosque, the latest assault on the minority group by the Modi-led Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).

According to the news source The Wire, the district collector in Jalgaon, which is under BJP administration in Maharashtra, issued an interim restraining order after hearing a complaint submitted by a right-wing outfit.

According to Section 144 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, the government official immediately forbade prayer, called local police, and asked the tahsildar to take control of the mosque on the grounds that it was ‘disputed’.

The Bombay High Court has heard a challenge to the order and the collector's authority.

However, Jumma Masjid Trust member Aslam worries that the most recent action taken against the Muslim community "marks the beginning of the communalization of a centuries-old mosque in the state."

Aslam has witnessed Muslims praying five times a day inside the Jumma Masjid in Jalgaon's Erandol for as long as he can remember.

The Waqf Board has authorized the 800-year-old masjid, which is a crucial place of worship for the community.

An unregistered entity called "Pandavwada Sangharsh Samiti" had submitted the complaint against the mosque, drawing attention to the centuries-old building.

Prasad Madhusudan Dandawate, the complainant, presented the allegation to collector Aman Mittal in May.

The complainant is a member of the hardline Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP), and the Bajrang Dal, according to his Facebook page.

Dandawate complained that the mosque was illegally constructed on a Hindu site of worship and should be taken over by the state.

According to the plaintiff, the Jumma Masjid Trust has "illegally" encroached on the area.

The trust members of the mosque told The Wire that they were unaware of the complaint until they received a notification from the district collector in June.

"By that time, the collector had begun holding hearings. We have a limited amount of time to present our argument. And then on July 11, the collector merely issued a restraining order," Aslam said.

The trust's assertions that it is an old building have also been supported by the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI).