Image: Dainik Bhaskar
On social media, a video of a mosque in Uttar Pradesh’s Saidabad being destroyed is being extensively shared. In the footage, you can see a bulldozer destroying a mosque. Reportedly, under the “pretense” of a road-widening project, a historic mosque known as the Shahi Masjid was destroyed on January 9 in Prayagraj, Uttar Pradesh’s Saidabad market.
The Intezamia Committee of the Shahi Masjid had argued that the construction (Shahi Masjid) has been in existence for a long time, i.e., since before independence and hence the monument has historic value, too. It is during the 16th century, during Sher Shah Suri’s rule, who established the Sur Empire in India, that the mosque is said to have been constructed. As is being reported, security personnel and representatives from the Public Works Department were present throughout the destruction.
According to the mosque’s Imam, Mohammad Babul Hussain, the case was scheduled for hearing today, January 16, in the lower court where it was being heard, reported TwoCircles.net. Hussain
“We told the officials that the matter is going to the lower court but the mosque was still demolished,” Hussain was quoted in Dainik Bhaskar.
It is pertinent to note that in August, 2022, the Allahabad High Court had dismissed a request filed to halt the scheduled destruction. After a notice regarding the same was issued to the Shahi Masjid by the Public Works Department, the locals had first approached the High Court, which in turn asked the petitioners to go to the Civil Court. The High Court had clarified that as per government report, the masjid has been constructed by “encroaching government land.” The mosque trust has reportedly traced the building to the 16th century.
The order of the High Court can be read here.
The video can be viewed here:
16th century Shahi Masjid was demolished by Indian authorities to widen a road in Allahabad, #UttarPradesh.
— DOAM (@doamuslims) January 16, 2023
The said video has also been shared by Ashok Swain, the former chair of International Water Cooperation at United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO),on his official Twitter handle.
Journalist and activist against Islamophobia CJ Werlem
Other instances of attack on mosques in UP
On November 17, in Uttar Pradesh’s Muzaffarnagar, district authorities razed down a 300-year old mosque. As provided by the official involved in the razing, the 300-year-old mosque was demolished as it came in the way of 709 AD Panipat-Khatimahighway. The said demolition was deemed as a required move for the motive of road widening.
A civil court in Mathura recently ordered a survey of the 17th-century Shahi Idgah
In the past month, thousands of Muslims in different Indian states have faced the possibility of being evicted from their homes due to this anti-Muslim propaganda, a report on which can be read here.