Varanasi district administration Friday sealed a mosque following a confrontation between Barelvi and Deobandi sects of the Muslim community over appointment of the Imam (head cleric) at the mosque. A group of people belonging to the Deobandi sect began an agitation after they reached the mosque for Friday prayers but found its main gates locked. They alleged that Barelvis had put the lock.
The two sects had had several confrontations since July last year when the then Imam, Maulana Sadrul Huda, died and Maulana Maroof took charge of the mosque. While Barelvis claim that Huda belonged to their sect and his successor should be from the same sect, the rival sect claims the deceased Imam was a Deobandi and Maroof is his genuine successor.
District administration put a seal on the lock Friday, intimating both sects that additional district magistrate (ADM) will meet their representatives on April 18.
Station Officer, Adampur police station, Ram Kumar Yadav confirmed the district administration had sealed the mosque and that the lock will be opened only after the matter is resolved.
When contacted, ADM, City, Vindhyavasani said, “Both sects have had disputes since the death of the former Imam and appointment of his successor. We will meet representatives from both sides on April 18.”