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Gurudwaras stand as models of tolerance offering space to Muslims for Friday prayer

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Gurudwaras stand as models of tolerance offering space to Muslims for Friday prayer
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Gurgaon: Days after the district administration withdrew the permissions for Muslims' Friday prayers at eight of 37 sites agreed upon earlier, a committee overseeing five gurudwaras here offered their area for Muslims to Namaz, The Indian Express (TIE) reported.

The administration's move was after objections arose from local residents and residents' welfare associations. The five gurudwaras under the committee are located in Sadar Bazar, Sector 39, Sector 46, Model Town and Jacobpura.

President of the Gurdwara Sri Guru Singh Sabha, Sabzi Mandi, Gurgaon, Sherdil Singh Sidhu told TIE that the gurudwara is the house of Guru and its doors are always open for any community to do their prayers. If Muslims are facing problems praying at designated places, they can do it in gurdwaras, he said.

Sidhu said that they are celebrating the birth anniversary of Guru Nanak Dev on Friday, and they have planned so that people could pray in small batches, maintaining social distancing. If required, official permission will also be gathered.

Mufti Mohammed Saleem, president of the Jamiat Ulama in Gurgaon, described the offer as 'gracious'. He said that the Jamiat met the representatives of the gurudwaras on Wednesday and decided to offer Namaz at Sector 39 and Sadar Bazar this Friday. He added that gurudwaras' welcome gesture would promote harmony among communities,

A shop owner in Gurgaon, Akshay Yadav, told TIE that he had offered his vacant space for Namaz and added that 15 people offered prayers there last Friday.

Gurgaon Muslim Council appreciated these offers and said that it was a true example of brotherhood where people of multiple faiths had come forward to defeat divisive forces, spreading hatred and disharmony here for the last two months.

The district administration had said earlier this month that designating places for Namaz will be taken only after obtaining consent from the local residents. In recent months, some local residents and pro-Hindutva groups had disrupted Friday prayers in certain places n Gurgaon.

Last Friday, a group affiliated with Sanyukta Hindu Sangharsh Samiti camped at a previously agreed site for Namaz and claimed that a volleyball court was to be made there. Another group had occupied a park, forcing devotees to pray elsewhere.

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