Villagers in Greater Noida’s Kadalpur village on Monday decided to approach the district magistrate office to take permission for the construction of a mosque on a piece of land that belongs to the gram sabha (village committee).
A wall of the mosque was allegedly demolished by the district administration since it was coming up illegally on government land. The demolition led to a huge controversy and the suspension of Gautam Budh Nagar sub-divisional magistrate Durga Shakti Nagpal.
The villagers organised a meeting of all gram sabha members, headed by village head Afroz Khan. They passed a resolution that a mosque would be built on the same land, which is owned by the local land management committee (LMC), a part of the gram sabha.
“All 11 LMC members unanimously approved the proposal. Now, we will meet Gautam Budh Nagar district magistrate Ravikant Singh and other officials concerned to seek their permission so that we can start construction of mosque,” said Shamshad Khan, 38, husband of village head Afroz Khan. He explained that the villagers did not know that they had to seek permission from the district administration before starting construction on an LMC land.
“We assumed that since no gram sabha member has objected to the construction of a mosque, we can go ahead with it. But now we want to build it with due permission. We have also written a letter to chief minister Akhilesh Yadav, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Governor BL Joshi to help us get the permission,” said Khan.
Villagers said local politicians told them that they don’t need government approval before taking up construction on LMC land.
“As per the Sharia law, the government should first transfer the land title to Waqf board concerned before construction of a new mosque. Building a mosque without permission or legal transfer of land is illegal as per the Quran,” said S Rizvi, an expert in Sharia matters.
“I have donated Rs. 11,000 for the mosque. People should stop playing politics to damage the secular fabric of our village or country,” said Chanderpal Prajapati, a resident of Kadalpur.