Tension in Aligarh old city over mosque repair work, security up

Aligarh: Security in some sensitive localities in the old city area here has been beefed up with the deployment of RAF team after tension between members of two communities over repair work at a mosque here.

A police official said today that two sides exchanged brickbats at Phool Chowk under Kotwali police station area last night.

The police had to use mild force to restore the order, the official said.

The trouble began when a shopkeeper from one community objected to the installation of a new minaret to replace a damaged one.

Police said that his shop was in the building adjoining the mosque and the shopkeeper argued the new minaret was larger than the original one and this could obstruct any future construction by him.

The mosque committee agreed to install a smaller minaret after the authorities intervened.

However, rumours started that the mosque was going to be demolished after senior district BJP leaders arrived on the spot.

SSP Rajesh Pandey told PTI the situation “is well under control” but police are taking no chances.

Rapid Action Force team has been deployed in the area and the dispute over the minaret has been resolved, he added.

Meanwhile, a senior district official is reported to have asked the members of the mosque committee as to how repair works at a place of worship were undertaken “without official permission”.