Srinagar: Bulandshahr’s Amargarh village grew tense after a group of local residents allegedly objected to the height of a minaret being constructed near a mosque, claiming it was a threat to their lives.
They have demanded that the structure either be demolished or its height be brought down to half. The district administration and police are holding meetings with the people to resolve the issue. Heavy police force has been deployed in the Hindu-dominated village as well, The Indian Express reported.
“Forty persons — 20 each from both Muslim and Hindu communities — have been bound down (surety to maintain peace) to prevent trouble,” said Station House Officer (SHO) of Jahangirabad police station, Jitendra Tiwari.
Amargarh village pradhan Om Prakash Sharma told The Indian Express: “Construction of the minar started in July 2015. It is being built near a mosque. The construction work was stopped for a while due to financial issues, and resumed in April this year. The 70-ft minar is now ready, only finishing work remains.”
“Following the dispute, the village has become tense. The district administration issued notice to me today, asking me to explain why I, being the village pradhan, I did not inform them about the minar being built. The fact is, I was regularly sending letters to district officials and police regarding the construction,” Sharma further said.
Sub-Divisional Magistrate, Syan (Bulandshahr), Avinash Chandra Maurya said, “The minar has been constructed on abadi (inhabited) land of the village. No permission was sought from the district administration for the same. Even villagers had not made any kind of complaint to the district administration and police.”
“Since the minar is constructed in a residential area, some people are raising objections that it could cause problems in case of an earthquake. We are trying to solve the dispute by holding meetings with members of both communities,” said SDM.
Circle Officer, Anoopshahr (Bulandshahr), Atul Kumar said, “During an earlier meeting, the committee which was involved in construction of the minar decided to cut short its height to 35 ft. On Monday, one of the committee members was at the site with labourers when local Muslim women arrived and raised objections. They demanded that the height of minar not be reduced. Following a protest, the committee member and labourers returned.”