Muslim Vendors Abused and Stopped from Selling Vegetables in UP

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Clarion India

LUCKNOW – Some vegetable vendors in Mahoba district of Uttar Pradesh were abused and stopped from selling their goods by a group of people who accused them of being members of the Tablighi Jamaat and of spreading the coronavirus.

In a written complaint, the vendors said they had gone to small villages to sell vegetables on Saturday, when a group of men urged people to stop purchasing anything from them because they are Muslims.

“Two vegetables sellers came to me and gave a complaint, alleging that they had gone to sell vegetables when villagers misbehaved, terming them [as members of the] Tablighi Jamaat,” Additional District Magistrate Ram Suresh Verma told PTI. However, a report by NDTV said five vegetable vendors were involved in the incident.

Meanwhile, Superintendent of Police Manilal Patidar, said he was “not aware” of the matter.

“Over 100 people came to buy [the vegetables] in the 15 minutes we were there,” Mohammad Shamim, one of the vendors, told NDTV. “About 10-15 people had already bought from us. Then some other people came and said: ‘these people are Muslims don’t buy from them’.”

Shamim said the men accused him and other vendors of having links with the Tablighi Jamaat. “The vegetables we had sold were returned to us. For two days we have not stepped out,” he added.

Ram Suresh Verma, a senior official of the Uttar Pradesh government posted in the district met the vendors and promised swift action. “There people have shared their concerns,” he told NDTV. “I have asked the sub-divisional magistrate to conduct a probe. No one will face any issues. whatever needs to be done, we will ensure it is done.”

After the Tablighi Jamaat preachers were infected with COVID-19, fake news and false information has been spread through the mainstream media as well as social media about the Tablighi Jamaat in particular and Muslim community in general. The incident has been given communal turn which triggered a series of attacks on Muslims in different parts of the country.

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