Namaz in open row: Kattar takes a U-Turn

New Delhi, May 7: After facing a backlash for his comments on Namaz not being offered in public places and should be done only in mosques and idgahs or at home, Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar has taken a U-turn. He now clarifies that he did not speak about stopping anyone, just hours after saying that namaz should be read only in mosques and eidgahs.

In the wake of alleged disruptions to namaz by right-wing gropus at multiple locations in Gurgaon, Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar on Sunday had said such congregations should be restricted to mosques, eidgahs or private places, even as he asserted the government will ensure that law and order is maintained.
Right-wing outfits have been trying to "disrupt" Friday prayers in Gurgaon over the last two weeks alleging that some people were trying to grab land. "Our point of view is that namaz should be offered in the precincts of religious places like mosques and Eidgahs, and if there is shortage of place for offering namaz, it should be done at private places," Khattar said.
He was addressing a press conference here before leaving for a 10-day tour of Israel and the United Kingdom. Over the last two weeks, there were "disruptions" to namaz at Wazirabad, the Atul Kataria Chowk, the Cyber Park, the Bakhtawar Chowk and at the South City, the police said. The disruptions were caused allegedly by members of the Vishwa Hindu Parishad, the Bajrang Dal, the Hindu Kranti Dal, the Gau Rakshak Dal and the Shiv Sena, they said.
Asked as to what would be the government's strategy to ensure law and order is maintained in view of such disruptions, Khattar said, "To maintain law and order is our duty and we will do it. We are ensuring that harmony is maintained and there is no tension and we have alerted our officials there." The BJP leader said the instances of namaz being offered at public places have been "increasing". The Friday prayers, he said, should be offered at designated places because certain individuals or departments may have objections to it being done at at public areas.

New24Bureau with Agencies