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Demand for ‘namaz’ room at UP Assembly appeasement politics: Keshav Prasad Maurya

Uttar Pradesh Deputy CM Keshav Prasad Maurya on Wednesday dubbed as “appeasement politics” the demand for a separate room for “namaz” on the state Assembly premises, stressing that such a suggestion should not be considered as it holds no justification. The demand was made by Samajwadi Party MLA Irfan Solanki in the wake of the allotment of a room for offering “namaz” on the Jharkhand Assembly premises.

Samajwadi Party (SP) MP Shafique-ur-Barq has also made a similar plea.

The BJP is Jharkhand has opposed the decision of allotting a room for offering prayers, saying either the order be recalled or a Hanuman temple and places of worship of other religions also be allowed on the Assembly premises.

Reacting to the demand made by the SP legislator, Maurya told PTI, “Such demands have no justification, be it a state Assembly, Parliament or any other government office. There should be no separate facility for offering namaz. If such an arrangement is made, it cannot be considered right.

“The SP leaders are raising the issue as part of their appeasement politics and such things should not be considered because neither the state nor people will gain anything out of it,” the senior BJP leader said.

He further added that there is no such possibility of it in UP in near future.

Solanki, a member of the UP Legislative Assembly from Kanpur’s Sisamau, had said, “I am an MLA for the past 15 years. Many times when Assembly proceedings are on, we Muslim MLAs have to leave the Assembly to offer namaz.”

“If there is a small prayer room in the Assembly, we won’t have to leave proceedings. On many occasions, if you have a question in the pipeline and it is the time for ‘azaan’ (prayer call), you can either ask the question or offer namaz,” he said.

“Even at international airports, there is a room for ‘ibadat’ (prayer). The Assembly Speaker can consider this and it will not cause any loss to anyone,” Solanki had added.

UP Legislative Assembly Speaker Hriday Narayan Dixit on Tuesday said he has not received any communication from the MLA in this regard and a decision on any such demand will be taken as per law.

Asked whether a room for prayers will be given if Solanki submits a request, Dixit said, “Discussions will be held with officials and a decision as per law will be taken.”

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