Hyderabad, January 24: Former Minister & ex-Leader of Opposition in Telangana Legislative Council Mohammed Ali Shabbir has strongly condemned the arrest of activists of various organisations and individuals who tried to visit the Secretariat to offer prayers at the two mosques, Masjid-e-Hashmi and Masjid-e-Dafatir Mohammedia, which were illegally demolished by TRS Government in July last year.
Shabbir Ali, in a media statement on Sunday, said that the Joint Action Committee of various Muslim organisations had given a call for 'Chalo Secretariat' to offer prayers at the same place where two mosques existed in the Secretariat till they were demolished by TRS Govt on the intervening night of 7th-8th July, 2020. He said that the demand for resuming prayers at the Secretariat mosques' sites was fully justified as Chief Minister K. Chandrashekhar Rao has illegally demolished them to facilitate construction of a new Secretariat complex. He said that CM KCR has also demolished an old temple in the Secretariat premises.
"CM KCR gave a statement on 10th July, 2020 admitting that his government has demolished the two mosques and a temple in the Secretariat. He had also expressed regret and assured to reconstruct all the three places of worship soon. When the Muslim community was grearing up to launch agitation, MIM President Asaduddin Owaisi took a delegation of religious leaders to Pragathi Bhavan and the Chief Minister gave another fake assurance of reconstructing the mosques within a month. The All India Muslim Personal Law Board (AIMPLB) held its meeting in Hyderabad on August 16 setting a two-week deadline for reconstruction of two mosques at the same place. This deadline expired on August 31. Again on September 9, CM KCR announced on the floor of the Legislative Assembly that he would lay the foundation stone for re-construction of two mosques and one temple in the Secretariat premises after the end of monsoon session of Assembly. This promise too was not honoured," he said.
Shabbir Ali said that the Chief Minister openly cheated the Muslim and Hindu communities on the promise of re-constructing the two mosques and a temple which his government has demolished illegally. Instead, he said that the State Government awarded the construction work to a Gujarati company Shapoorji Pallonji. The construction of the first floor of the new Secretariat complex has already been completed. However, the Chief Minister did nothing to honour his promise of re-constructing the places of worship, he said.
The Congress leader said that CM KCR has repeatedly hurt the religious sentiments of both Muslims and Hindus not only by illegal demolition of two mosques and a temple, but also by making false promises of their re-construction. "So far, TRS Govt has demolished more than six places of worship, including Ek Khana Masjid in Amberpet, on one pretext or the other. CM KCR cannot expect the Muslim community to remain silent over the demolition of mosques where five times daily prayers were being offered till their demolition," he said.
Shabbir Ali reminded that as the then Cabinet Minister he had the privilege of laying the foundation stone for the reconstruction and renovation of both the mosques. The foundation stone for the Masjid-e-Hashmi near D-Block in the Secretariat was laid by (Late) Moulana Abdullah Qureshi Sahab, the then Imam of Mecca Masjid, and Shabbir Ali on April 28, 2005. Another mosque near C-Block, Masjid-e-Dafatir Mohammadia, was part of Saifabad Palace, which was constructed on 25 acres of land by Sixth Nizam Mir Mehboob Ali Pasha during 1888 AD and it was later used as Dewan (Administrative Office). The foundation for re-construction of this mosque was laid on December 31, 2008, by (Late) Moulana Mohammed Hameeduddin Aquil Hussami Sahab and Shabbir Ali. Its construction began on 8th May, 2009 and it was inaugurated on 9th September 2010 by Mufti Khaleef Ahmed, Ameer-e-Jamia Nizamia.
Shabbir Ali demanded that the Chief Minister immediately order re-construction of both the mosques and a temple at the same place without further delay. Further, he demanded withdrawal of cases booked against those who tried to visit the Secretariat mosques on Sunday. (eom)