Ganesh festival at Eidgah Maidan and namaz at hometext_fields
The Supreme Court on Tuesday cancelled the permission to organise the Ganesh Chaturthi festival at the Eidgah Maidan in Chamarajpet, in Bengaluru. At 11.30 pm on Tuesday, the Karnataka High Court rejected a petition filed by Anjuman Islam against the move to organise the Ganesh festival at the Hubballi Eidgah Maidan, thus permitting celebration of the festival in the Eidgah. These verdicts delivered by two courts on the same day over two Eidgahs, more than as court decrees, reflect several pathetic realities about our country. In the recent past, the situation has become such that a common Indian Muslim has a consternation whenever a religious festival or ritual is about to happen. Large-scale anti-Muslim violence took place across the country during the last Ram Navami festival. In many places, saffron flags were tied openly on mosque minarets. In Madhya Pradesh and Delhi, the houses of those who protested against such atrocities were demolished using bulldozers. The series of violence and vandalism amid the Hanuman Jayanti celebrations in Delhi's Jahangirpuri made international news.
Hindutva movements have a long tradition of using the Ganesh festival for communal divisions and riots. A look at the history of the Hindutva movement in Maharashtra will make it clear. Now, they have spread it all over the country. Ganesh Chaturthi wasn't a festival widely observed or celebrated in South India. Now the Sangh Parivar has managed to make it popular across South India, including Kerala. The celebrations or rituals of a religious sect are usually not something that should upset anyone. However, now these celebrations are being used to cause conflicts. Not only the Hindutva organisations but also the government systems are also working to make such a turn of events possible.
Also read: Ganesha idol installed at Hubbali Idgah ground
It was the Urban Deputy Commissioner himself who came up with the plan to organise the Ganesh festival at Chamrajpet Eidgah in Bengaluru. The Karnataka High Court promptly gave permission for it. The Karnataka Waqf Board approached the Supreme Court against the Karnataka High Court verdict and was able to secure a favourable verdict. However, in the same state the Karnataka High Court rejected Anjuman's plea to stop the move to organise the Ganesh festival at Hubballi Eidgah. An earlier court ruling - that the Hubballi Eidgah was not owned by Anjuman Islam but was only leased to them - was cited to justify this move. Neither Bengaluru nor Hubballi suffers from a lack of space to organise the festival of Ganesh Chaturthi. Then, why are they wandering around the city seeking out Eidgah Maidans? It is a system that mixes politics and communalism in equal measure. Elections are fast approaching in Karnataka. Hindutva organisations want to stir up trouble as much as possible. But, there is another goal being chased.
Also read: 26 booked in UP for holding mass Namaz inside house
The goal is to turn Muslim institutions and places of worship into objects of dispute. They are creating trouble around the Muslim places of worship all over the country. It is not only mosques and Eidgahs, even the Taj Mahal and Qutub Minar have become controversial due to their efforts. The situation is so bad that even the RSS chief had to issue a statement declaring that there is no need to search for Shivalinga in every mosque. A few days ago, a piece of news that emerged from Uttar Pradesh indicates a more serious problem. Police have registered a case against 26 people in Moradabad district's Dulhepur village over a complaint about performing organised namaz in homes. The case is under IPC section 505-2 which charges them with the crime of public nuisance. This village in Uttar Pradesh does not have a mosque and the authorities are not granting permission to build one. Everyone has seen how the government and the Sangh Parivar treated the Muslim devotees of Gurugram who prayed in the Maidan on Fridays because they did not get permission to build a mosque. To avoid such a fate, the Muslims of Dulhepur prayed indoors. But, even that has been interpreted as a criminal offence. It is another matter that police dropped the case subsequently, but not before stirring communal sentiments.
Also read: UP police cancel FIR against 26 people over mass namaz in open space; says no evidenceOn the one hand, the government itself is coming forward to organise the Ganesh festival in Eidgahs. On the other hand, a case is being filed against those who prayed in their homes. This is the bright new India Sangh Parivar is proposing and we have to accept this fact. Muslims should find their way in full realisation of this reality.