Opposition from Muslims, West Bengal’s local administration denied permission to Hindus to perform Durga Puja.

Demos Foundation    11-Oct-2019
Date: 2 Oct 2019
 
According to news channel India Today, 300 Hindu families residing in Kanglapahari village of Birbhum district in West Bengal receieved a major setback when District Administration denied permission to hold Durga Puja. This is for the fourth year in a row that these families were denied permission to hold Durga Puja and be a part of the celebrations by the district administration.
 
Locals claim that few Muslim families residing in the Hindu-dominated village have been raising objections as far as the Durga Puja celebrations are concerned. “This is happening for the fourth time in a row. The district administration fears that the 25 Muslim families residing in the village might get angered and bring the situation to a boil, hence they are denying us the permission to hold the Durga Puja. Why Muslims are opposing the Durga Puja if we are not opposing their festivals. This reflects that the West Bengal government is not secular and appease a community for Vote Bank politics .” said a villager, requesting anonymity.
 
The Superintendent of Police, Birbhum district, Sudheer Kumar Neelakantam could not be reached for comment. However, a senior police official said, “The village has a history of several communal tensions. The only reason why the permission is being denied to hold the Durga Puja is to maintain law and order and prevent any incidents of the communal flare-up.”
 
Like every year, the organisers, Kanglapahari Durga Mandir Committee members reached out to the District Magistrate, Superintendent of Police, Sub-Divisional Officer and Sub-Divisional Police Officer requesting permission to hold the Durga Puja, but to no avail. However, the locals have moved the High Court demanding the right to celebrate Durga Puja. A hearing is scheduled for Monday.
 
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