TENSION PREVAILED in Tiwaripur of Gorakhpur city on Tuesday following a clash between members of the Hindu and Muslim communities over the installation of a loudspeaker at a madrasa.
Police said members of Gorakhpur MP Yogi Adityanath’s Hindu Yuva Vahini objected to the installation of the loudspeaker before the afternoon namaz and wanted it removed. As police arrived at the spot, both groups were brought to police station where attempts were made to strike a compromise.
“Just as both sides were about to reach a compromise, some people waiting outside started pelting stones at the police station. They were controlled by the police. No one was injured,” said District Magistrate O N Singh. Sources said police used minor force to bring the situation under control.
“We are trying to amicably resolve the issue. Police and administration officials have held a march in the market and everything is under control. Police will lodge an FIR against those who indulged in stone pelting,” he added.
Hindu Yuva Vahini’s state president Sunil Singh, who had complained against the installation of the loudspeaker, said the area has a mixed population of Hindus and Muslims. “I have given the administration till today to remove the loudspeaker, which was installed about five days ago,” he added.
Singh said the loudspeaker was first installed at the madrasa in 2004, but it was removed within a few days following objections by Hindus. “Now, it has again been installed. There are attempts to convert the madrasa into a mosque,” he claimed.
SP leader Ziaul Salam, meanwhile, alleged that locals had not complained about the loudspeaker but only members of the Hindu Yuva Vahini. “Wherever there is a madrasa, a mosque already exists. Thus, the loudspeaker was installed. We are trying to reach a settlement in a peaceful manner… There is no disagreement,” he claimed.