Muslim locals disrupt school prayer, threaten teachers to stop 20-minute prayer session for students

A primary school teacher in Palanpur city in Gujarat has filed a complaint to the division primary education officer regarding the threats he received from the Muslim community over prayers. As per reports, Muslims threatened him to stop the 20-minute prayer in the school.

The incident occurred on January 23 in N Kothari Primary School, located in Dhondiawadi Palanpur. The teacher said in his complaint that some antisocial elements came to the school and created a ruckus demanding to stop the prayers. The video of the incident went viral on social media.

Reports suggest that students arrived at the school at around in the morning, and when the prayers started, a mob of 10-12 people came and created a ruckus demanding to stop the prayers. There are over 500 children that study in the school. Out of these, 150-175 students are from the Muslim community. The school has 16 teachers.

Music teacher Maheshbhai Solanki told Divya Bhaskar that every day, students recite mantras and prayers during the 20-minute time allotted for the same. Other activities, including quizzes etc., take place as well. He said, “[The mob] came at the time of the prayer and abused teachers. They demanded to stop the prayers. The students were scared. The principal has given a written complaint to the division primary education officer.”

As per the written complaint filed by the school, a few residents who live in the area do not like prayers that take place every morning. They often create problems at the school and demand to stop the prayers.

The school informed Divya Bhaskar that the students participate in reciting prayers, mantras and other activities, including a quiz, general knowledge, news reading, skits and more. “It helps encourage students to indulge in extracurricular activities,” the school said.

Muslim locals had demanded to stop Gayatri Mantra recitation in Ahmedabad

This is not the first time Muslims have demanded a school to stop Hindu prayers at school. In 2017, a Muslim leader of Maktampura Haji Asrarbeg S Mirza wrote to CBSE and complained against DAV International School alleging that the school was forcing the Muslim students to recite Gayatri Mantra during prayers. Furthermore, he claimed that Muslim festivals like Eid were not celebrated in the school. The school had denied the allegations and said that the Muslim students were free to stay away from the prayers.

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