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Wednesday, October 4, 2023

Nuh violence: Panchayats seek ways to restore peace

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Representatives from panchayats of 52 villages of Nuh and Palwal districts met on Friday to discuss the recent communal flare-up in the districts and take measures to ensure that there was no repeat of the July 31 violence when the Brajmandal Dharmik Yatra resumes on August 28.

Women buy groceries at a village shop in Nuh district. (Parveen Kumar/ HT)

Read here: Nuh gears up to host G20 meeting next month

Participants at the Sadbhavna Panchayat at Mandokla village in Palwal said they have been making efforts to defuse the situation and restore harmony between the Hindu and Muslim communities. The decision to hold the panchayat was taken after Samyukta Kisan Morcha contacted Pal Panchs (community leaders associated with village panchayats).

United Kisan Morcha leader Jai Narayan said that the representatives of all villages and people from all castes and religions participated in the meeting. It was decided that all the office bearers of Panch Kisan Samyukta Kisan Morcha will go to villages in the region and spread the message of brotherhood. The participants also said that they will ensure that anti-social elements are not allowed to disturb peace.

Vijender Tewatia, Pal Panch of the Tewatia community and a member of the panchayat said that the members who delivered hate speech in Pondri village on August 13 were not invited on Friday to the meeting. “Our motive was to resolve the communal tension. We invited members of Muslim communities from all the villages affected… both communities have agreed to organise a mahapanchayat in Nuh before August 28 to plan the religious procession peacefully,” he said.

The organisers of the panchayat said that those who had delivered hate speech were not invited and will not be invited in the next mahapanchayat that will be held in Nuh and if they wish to join, they have to seek forgiveness. Dharamvir Dagar, president of Dagar khaap said that he had boycotted the Pondri mahapanchayat that was one sided and the Muslim community was targeted directly and indirectly, including by the use of pejoratives found in Islamophobic vocabulary.

“The communal violence has affected entire area and there has been disturbances since July 31. Both the communities have stopped meeting each other and differences are visible, we do not want this to go on another level so we decided to resolve the issue,” he said.

Arun Jaildar, Sondh village, president of 52 Khaap (Paal), said that their prime concern was to ensure that both communities refrain their children and family members to indulge in any kind of communal tension or violence and stay away from anti-social elements. “The meeting was held to spread love and peace and to come together and organise another yatra in Nuh. The issue has been resolved from our end in our district and we have decided to meet in another mahapanchayat in Nuh to set an example that issues can be resolved, no matter what,” he said.

On the other hand, the Muslim community members from at least 20 villages said that they will welcome the Hindu brothers in Nuh on August 28 near the Nalhar temple and will complete the religious procession with them.

“Some Hindu leaders had used abusive and derogatory statements against our community and people. Who started and why the violence broke out is a never ending topic but we want to live in peace like before,” said Iqbal Khan from Bichhor village in Nuh.

Read here: Cops in lookout for Nuh imam who spread fake news to incite mobs

Tabyab Hussain of Ghasera said that this was the first time that they have witnessed communal violence and the situation became tense in the area. “We have a long association with Hindus. We have been guarding the local temple in the village since December 19, 1947 when Gandhiji visited our village amid the tumult of partition and assured the Meos that their security was paramount to him.” he said.

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