The panchayat of Titoli village in Haryana’s Rohtak district has asked its Muslim population to choose Hindu names and not to pray in the open, The Hindu reported on Thursday. The residents of the village adopted an oral resolution at a meeting on Tuesday to avoid wearing skull caps and keeping long beards.
Several police officers were present at the meeting, the newspaper reported.
“Muslims have been living in the village before Independence,” villager Suresh told The Tribune. “We all have been living harmoniously. Muslims in the village have Hindu names.”
The panchayat has also resolved to take over a one-acre plot of land under the Waqf board that is used as a graveyard. It will give the Muslim community another piece of land for burials.
The panchayat also resolved to bar a young man from entering who was arrested in August for allegedly killing a calf from entering Titoli village. A mob had attacked Yamin Khokhar’s house last month on suspicion that he had slaughtered a cow for the festival of Bakri Eid.
While some villagers maintained that there is no communal tension, the police have said they will look into it.
“It is unconstitutional,” Sub-Divisional Magistrate (Rohtak) Rakesh Kumar told The Hindu. “I will speak to the village sarpanch in this connection.”
Deputy Commissioner Yash Garg also said there was no report of communal tension in the village. “Still, if any such unconstitutional diktat has been passed by the panchayat, we will look into the matter and take appropriate action,” Garg told The Tribune.