BJP leader Manoj Kotak termed the demand a publicity stunt meant for personal gain.
Mumbai: In a move that is likely to stoke a fresh controversy, Samajwadi Party corporator Rais Shaikh has demanded a prayer house for offering namaz in the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) headquarters. The demand been strongly opposed by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), one of the leading parties in the BMC.
In a letter written to mayor Vishwanath Mahadeshwar, the SP group leader has demanded that a prayer house should be made for Muslims to offer namaz in the civic headquarters.
“Muslims offer namaz five times a day. In the BMC, there are Muslim corporators in several parties. In addition to this, there are lot of Muslim officials and employees working in the BMC headquarters. For the Namaz prayers, they have to use party offices or any available space in the civic headquarters.
Muslim women are suffering the most due to this,” said Mr Shaikh.
To enable Muslim corporators and officials offer namaz in civic headquarters, a place should be kept reserved as a prayer house, he added.
BJP group leader Manoj Kotak termed the move a publicity stunt. “The BMC is there for providing civic services and amenities to Mumbaikars. It should not be used for wrong religious demands. The demand has been made for personal gain,” he said.