Sadar Bazaar’s Jama Masjid, which sees 1,500 people coming from near and far for the Friday namaz, saw 150 in attendance for the second time since July 31, when violence erupted in Nuh and later spread to Gurgaon.
A day earlier, the Gurugram Imam Sangathan had urged people to offer namaz from home.
On Friday, only one entry gate was open and police were deployed on all sides of the mosque. Ilyas (60), a shopkeeper who lives with his brother-in-law in a rented space close by, said he had gone to his home in Hathin on August 2 after pockets of Gurgaon saw violence.
“I came back on Thursday and offered namaz here today. Usually, people flock to this area and have to pray at the park in front of the mosque. Today, very few people came. When will it go back to normal?” he said.
Naseer Ahmed (73), who has a stall in front of the mosque, said he offered prayers at his home this Friday. “I have been praying at my home for two weeks now. The last time I had to do this was during the pandemic when religious places were closed. I will return once the situation is normal.”
The Indian Express also found that 26 meat shops around the mosque were closed. “Many meat shops and small temporary stalls were closed after the Nuh violence… Most of them went back to their villages on August 1,” said Tilak Raj, who owns a shop near the mosque.
In nearby Sohna too, where the Shahi Jama Masjid was vandalised allegedly by a mob on August 1, few showed up for prayers. “We had received a call from the administration and police, and the Imam Sangathan had also told us to appeal to people to pray at their homes. Around 25-30 people came when normally over 400 people turn up from 12 villages in Sohna,” said Maulana Mohammad Kalim, the imam.
Abdul Habib Qasmi, president of Gurugram Imam Sangathan, Thursday said they had decided namaz will not be offered in the open at the six designated places Friday.
Meanwhile, following VHP’s announcement that the Brij Mandal Yatra would be taken out again on August 28 from Nuh’s Nalhar temple, and announcements by Sarva Hindu Samaj regarding a panchayat in Nuh on Sunday, Gurgaon Police appealed to the public not to gather without permission from the administration. A Nuh police spokesperson said the panchayat is planned under the jurisdiction of Palwal.