Five persons, including three women, were booked in Amroha district on Saturday evening for allegedly promoting enmity between religious communities through their “false” statements about harassment at Sakatpur village. The FIR was lodged at Sadnagli police station against Ahmed Ali, his brother Rehmat Ali, Tahiba, Zareena and Sahjahan — all residents of Sakatpur village — under IPC section 153-A (Promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion, race, place of birth, residence, language, etc, and doing acts prejudicial to maintenance of harmony). No one has been arrested so far.
Over the last two weeks, police said, there were some tense moments in the village with some objecting to Muslims offering prayers in a hall, owned by Ali and once a school for religious studies, that was not recognised as a mosque. An inquiry into the matter by the district administration and police found no mention of a mosque in the village in its revenue records. Thereafter, Ahmed Ali, was told to not allow anyone other than his family to offer namaz there.
“Despite the dispute being resolved, these five accused were found giving false statements of harassment at the hands of Hindus, which could have led to communal tension in the village,” said Avinash Kumar Gautam, Circle Officer, Hasanpur. Shabbir Ali, related to accused Rehmat Ali said, “We used to hold namaz in the hall for the last four years. A mosque was built after mutual understanding between members of both the communities. Now, some have raised the issue. We have stopped holding namaz at that place.”
Superintendent of Police (Amroha) Santosh Kumar Mishra said the police and the administration only asked Ali to not allow people from other areas to offer namaz there. A few village residents have been been “bound down” against creating trouble, he added.