Union urban development minister S Jaipal Reddy told a delegation of Muslim religious leaders and politicians that his ministry would seek permission from court to allow Muslims to pray at the site of a razed mosque in the Capital as a "temporary solution".
Tension had broken out in the Capital's Jangpura area over the demolition of a 30-year-old mosque, reportedly because it stood on government land. Influential Muslim leaders, including Rajya Sabha MP Mahmood Madni, told Reddy that for a long-term resolution of the dispute, Muslims were ready to buy out the land at prevailing market rates if it belonged to the Delhi Development Authority (DDA).
"If this indeed DDA land, then the government should let us buy it out," Madni told HT. The delegation included East Delhi MP Sandeep Dikshit and local MLA D Marwah.
Muslims have cited a bordering graveyard to the buttress their claim that the mosque was build on Wakf land and said they lost a court battle because of inadequate legal defence.
A wakf is a Muslim endowment, usually landed property, meant for religious or charitable activities.
The Jama Masjid Foundation said the mosque was razed despite local MP Dikshit certifying it as a Wakf property.
Foundation chief Yahya Bukhari told HT: "The L-G should have called for wider consultations. We have called religious leaders from all over the country and will launch an agitation if prayers aren't restored."
Reddy called Delhi Police Commissioner BK Gupta, asking him to allow prayers till the matter is settled, Madni said.
Nizamuddin remains tense
For the second consecutive day, Nizamuddin witnessed spurts of violence after a mosque was razed in the area. The police said that around 4.30pm on Thursday, the mobs again took to streets and resorted to stone pelting, after the police refused the 1pm and 4pm prayers. The police finally allowed the mob and others to offer their evening prayers at 5.30pm on Mathura Road, outside the Hazrat Nizamuddin Police Station. HTC, ndelhi