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New ‘Babri’ averted in Lucknow
By Obaid Nasir, Lucknow

An evil was nipped in the bud. A ‘Babri Masjid’ incident was not allowed to be repeated in Lucknow, thanks to the timely intervention by young Shia cleric Maulana Kalbe Jawwad and superintendent of Police KS Rathore. Sunni youths also extended whole-hearted support to avert the nefarious design of communal elements.

In the Balaganj locality of old Lucknow Masjid Malka Kishwar Jahan was the target of land sharks who got some support from local police and tried to give it a communal colour. The Masjid is registered with Shia Wakf Board and was being looked after by one Syed Moammar Husain through Husaini Tanzeem. As very few Shia families live around the Masjid it usually remained closed and was opened occasionally for cleaning and routine maintenance. Over time a pipal sapling grew and became a young tree stretching out from within a wall of the mosque which has some land adjacent to it that is also registered with the Shia Wakf Board. This land was the main target of the land mafias. With alleged support of local police (Thakurganj and Balaganj) they hoisted the saffron flag over the pipal tree and painted Trishool on the entrance gate of the mosque where Allah and Muhammad were engraved. When Moammar Husain objected he was threatened by the local goons and when he approached the local police there too he was snubbed.

Mr. Husain then approached Maulana Kalbe Jawwad who decided to lead the Zohar namaz in the said Masjid. He was joined by hundreds of Shia and Sunni youths of the adjacent locality, while Shias joined the Namaz, Sunni youths stood guard. The police too reached the place and SP, Mr. Rathore, snubbed the SHO Thakurganj and Chowki Incharge Balaganj and threatened to take stringent action against them if the mischief was repeated in future. Interestingly before the arrival of SP city the saffron flag and the Trishool were removed. Maulana Kalbe Jawwad exhorted the local Sunnis to offer five-time namaz in this mosque as there are very few Shia families in the area. He said that as he has to lead the Juma prayer traditionally in Asifi mosque, Sunnis should offer Juma namaz in this mosque. Interestingly, contrary to their earlier behavior, when Maulana Kalbe Jawwad with his followers entered the mosque no one came forward to stop him. Even the SHO and Chowki Incharge stood there silently.

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