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Kolkata | Wednesday, Apr 11, 2012 | HE Kolkata News Desk :: In a very significant move, West Bengal BJP today took out a protest rally today against the proposed monthly allowances and others to the Imams in the state as recently announced by WB Chief minister Mamata Banerjee in a gala Imam Conference in Netaji indoor Stadium on 3rd April 2012. The rally began from the Vidyasagar Statue at College Square and culminated beneath the Gandhi Statue at Mayo road. After the rally, party’s state unit president Rahul Sinha said, “The government has a duty to look after the people of the weaker section and no government unless it has a communal bias can provide allowances to any religious leaders of any community.” “More so, Waqf Board is authorised to provide public money to the weaker sections, but not to distribute it’s funds to the Imams. The state government also cannot not provide public money to the Waqf Board for providing allowances to the Imams,” he added. Mr Sinha said this is nothing but a bribery to secure the Muslim votes in the Panchayat election.
” So, it is a high time for the Imams to come out boldly and refuse this offer which would constitutes an indignity of both the Islam and the Imams,” he opined. The rally was led by the party’s state unit president Rahul Sinha along with a huge representation from the Muslim community.
The Ex BJP President Sri Tathagato Roy on Wednesday (11.04.2012) criticised West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s announcement of sops to imams and said no government could provide allowances to any religious leader of any community.
“This is nothing, but bribery to secure Muslim votes in the coming panchayat elections,” state party president Rahul Sinha said.
“Waqf Board cannot be given public money by the state government for payment of allowances to imams,” Sinha said after a protest rally from College Square to Gandhi statue.
The chief minister had on April three announced payment of honorarium of Rs 2,500 per month through the Wakf Board to 30,000 imams in the state.
Interestingly, a large number of Muslim supporters of BJP, WB including Muslim women and the leaders and members of BJP Minority Morcha (Cell) took part in the protest rally against ‘bribery allowance’ of Rs. 2500/- to the Bengal Imams. Some of the protesters alleged that most of Imams are getting good help from the ‘Masjid fund’ and the ‘Muslim society’ and most of them are attached with .’Arabic Education System’, ‘Koran Telawat in Islamic Jalsa’ and ‘Qudrati Tabiz-Dowa-Hekkimi treatment’ from which they get suficient money. But the poor Muslims are not getting any monthly financial help who actually need something for their acute poverty. Most of the leaders opposed the illogical sops by Mamata to the Imams only to appease and control the Muslim Vote Bank in coming Panchayat election in West Bengal in next year.
The protesters hold the placard writing the slogans like: ‘Imam Bhata Noy – Garib Bhata Chai (We don’t want Imam allowances, We want Poverty allowances)’, ‘Koshagar Khali kore, Danchatra bandha karo (Stop sops by spoiling revenue)’ or ‘Imam Bhata nay, Ghush! (It is not Imam allowance, it is a bribe to Imam!)’ etc. West Bengal BJP warned law suit against illogical and communal ‘Imams’ monthly Allowance’ after the govt. notification is published. (Input – PTI | UNI).