A Muslim woman who was allotted a house under the Mukhyamantri Awas Yojana in Gujarat’s Vadodara has over the past few days been facing protests from residents of the housing complex, reported The Indian Express on Friday.

The 44-year-old woman, who is employed with an arm of the Ministry of Entrepreneurship and Skill Development, was allotted a flat in the Motnath Residency Cooperative Housing Services Society in the Harni area of Vadodara in 2017.

The residents started staging protests against a Muslim moving into the society in 2020, the woman told The Indian Express. The most recent demonstration took place on June 10, videos of which have been circulating on social media.

Even before she could move in, the residents had sent a written complaint to the district collector, the Vadodara municipal commissioner, the mayor as well as the commissioner of police in the city.

They demanded that the allotment of the house be “invalidated” and the woman be shifted to another housing scheme.

“We believe that Harni area is a Hindu-dominated peaceful area and there is no settlement of Muslims in the periphery of about four kilometres,” read the complaint. “It is like setting fire to the peaceful life of 461 families.”

The residents have also cited an “imminent law-and-order crisis”.

One of the signatories of the complaint told The Indian Express: “It is the general consensus that all of us have booked homes in this colony because it is a Hindu neighbourhood and we would not like persons from other religious and cultural backgrounds to live in our colony. It is for the comfort of both parties.”

The woman, who is currently living with her parents and son in another area of Vadodara, said that she has repeatedly tried to speak with the managing committee of the society regarding the complaint, but to no avail.

Officials of the Vadodara Municipal Corporation’s housing department told the newspaper that the matter needs to be resolved by “both parties or by approaching competent courts”.

The official said the house was allotted as per norms as government schemes did not segregate applicants and beneficiaries on the basis of religion.

Social media users have been flagging reports about the protests, calling it an instance of “communalisation”.