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Mumbai: Residents protest against proposed mosque in Sanpada, block Sion-Panvel highway

The protesters blocked the Sion-Panvel highway for an hour before the police managed to take control of the situation and detained some protesters.

By: Express News Service | Navi Mumbai |
November 28, 2018 2:02:51 am
Protest against mosque, protest in sanpada, protest on Sion-panvel highway, Mumbai news, Indian Express             Residents of Sanpada participate in a rally on Tuesday. (Photo by Narendra Vaskar)

A group of residents on Tuesday protested against a proposed mosque in Sanpada on the Sion-Panvel highway. The protesters also shaved their heads off on the highway.

The Akhil Sanpada Rahiwasi Mahasangh took out a protest march on Tuesday against the proposed mosque in Sanpada. According to Ghanshyam Pate of the Mahasangh, the protest was regarding a proposed mosque in Sector 8 of Sanpada. He said: “Sanpada is a Hindu majority area with only 51 Muslim families. Bringing a mosque here is akin to creating a religious clash.”

The protest started at around 8 am after rituals at the Ganesh temple. “We have been protesting against the mosque since 2001. In 2002, the then senior inspector had sent a favourable report for the mosque, despite our protests. We have spoken to the municipal authorities to find a different place with sizable Muslim population for the mosque, but now they seem to be adamant to make it in Sanpada,” Pate said.

The protesters blocked the Sion-Panvel highway for an hour before the police managed to take control of the situation and detained some protesters. “We had provided heavy bandobast and when the traffic on the Sion-Panvel highway was getting obstructed, we detained some of the protesters. However, the law and order situation was maintained,” said a senior officer from the Navi Mumbai police.

However, residents claimed they would protest until the proposed mosque is moved somewhere else. “…The mosque will disturb the peace of the area in a Hindu majority population and we will not let it come up in Sanpada,” said Anjali Mate, a protester. Another resident Suyash Kale said: “There is enough space in other places. This is a trick to create communal rivalry in quiet Sanpada. Why can’t they build mosque somewhere else?”

Satish Ugile, assistant town planning officer, said: “We have received the proposal for the mosque in Sanpada. CIDCO has sent us the proposal and there is even a court directive in the matter that we need to make the decision within a stipulated time. It is under consideration as of now.”

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