Uttar Pradesh Police’s Diktat: Noida Offices Ordered to Prevent Muslim Employees From Offering Namaz in Open Areas
Per Reports, the police think this is how they will prevent communal disharmony in the run up to 2019 general elections
The Uttar Pradesh Police has reportedly ordered offices and establishments in Noida to direct their Muslim employees to stop offering Friday prayers in open areas such as parks. A notice issued last week by police stations in Noida said that companies will be held liable if their employees are found violating the directive.
The police notice states: “We want to inform you that there is no permission from the administration to conduct any kind of religious activity including Namaz offered on Friday in the Authority park in Sector 58. It has been often seen that the Muslim workers of your company assemble in the park to offer Namaz and I, the SHO, have told the group to not hold prayers in the park. Also, their plea to the city magistrate has not received any permission to do so. Thus, it is expected from you that you at your level inform your Muslim employees to not come to the park to offer Namaz. If employees of your company come to the park, it will be assumed that you have not informed your employees and your company will be held liable,” the Indian Express reported.
The reason behind this disturbing move by the Noida police, according to them, is that communal harmony could be disturbed, especially in the run-up to the upcoming Lok Sabha elections in 2019.
Speaking to the IE, Pankaj Rai, SHO of the Sector 58 police station, from where the initial round of notices were issued, said: “Yes, we have sent notices to many companies in our area after several complaints regarding a large number of people offering Namaz in the afternoon especially on Fridays. Since most people offering prayers are employees in companies nearby, we have sent notices to those companies to ask their employees to either offer Namaz in a Masjid, Eidgah or within the office compound on the roof etc.”