A Hindutva group Hindu Janajagruthi Samithi (HJS) on Monday warned of “severe” protest if authorities did not stop Muslims from using a resting room at the Krantiveera Sangolli Rayanna (KSR) station in Majestic.
Interestingly, the railway station has at least two temples, including one on Platform 7 and another near the locomotive shed, as well as a small room where Christians offer prayers.
However, members of Goa-based Hindu Janajagruti Samiti, whose name was linked with accused in the Gauri Lankesh murder case, chose to enter a section of the room, built for resting of porters and other staffers, which is used by the minority community to offer prayers.
Officials said they were surprised by the development. “Prayers have been offered there for at least 30 years. Similarly, pooja has been performed at the temples for decades. Vested interests are trying to create a controversy,” a senior railway official told DH on condition of anonymity.
In a letter submitted to the station manager, the Samiti linked the prayer hall to terror activities. “Giving permission for prayers on the platform seems to be a conspiracy. There are chances of demands to convert this place into a masjid. Presently, Bengaluru has been made a haven of terror activities,” the letter said.
To a question, the Samiti’s Karnataka spokesperson Mohan Gowda told DH he was not aware of temples located on the railway premises.
On social media, however, the video clips of temple and a Christian prayer hall on the platform went viral along with the one showing the Hindutva group members complaining about the hall used by Muslims to offer prayer. Many users slammed the group’s move to communalise the practice, while others said all the religious structures should be shifted out of the station.
Update 1 Feb 2022:
A room, used by Muslims as prayer hall at #KSR Railway station in Bengaluru was converted back to restroom, removing all the namaz equipments & locked after #HinduJanajagruthiSamithi raised complaint about Namaz being offered there.
Cops also deployed outside the room.