Now, Muslim Villagers Denied Access to Water; Jharkhand Video Goes Viral

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Clarion India

NEW DELHI – A video clip showing Muslim residents being denied access to a tube well of drinking water  in a Jharakhand village has gone viral on social media platforms.

The caption of the video, which was uploaded by a Facebook page called Kashish News on April 19, says the incident happened in a village in Ranchi, the capital of Jharkhand, just three km away from the residence of the state chief minister.

In the video, a woman wearing a headscarf says some people removed the tube from the well to render it dysfunctional. The visibly angry woman says they are facing difficulty in fetching drinking water. She asks, “What kind of rule is this to stop us from getting water from a tube well which is a public property?”

She asserts everyone has the right to fetch water from the tube well.

The incident came at a time when a resurgent wave of Islamophobia has gripped India. Everyday reports of hate crimes against Muslims come to the fore. This is the result of a vilification campaign systematically carried out by a large section of mainstream and social media against Tablighi Jamaat after their Nizamuddin Markaz in New Delhi emerged one of the Coronavirus clusters.

In several instances people associated with Tablighi Jamaat have been subjected to violence both by mobs and police. Muslim labourers and vegetable vendors have been attacked or openly discriminated against over the rumours that Muslims are spreading Coronavirus.

A Muslim villager says, “Our sisters used to fetch water from the tube well. People from all communities used to get water from there, but someone has started this rumour that Coronavirus will spread if Muslims were allowed to use the tube well. After this, some people removed the tube from the well,” says in the video.

“These are hot days and Ramzan (the Muslim holy month of fasting) is also approaching,” the woman says to stress the gravity of the situation. She affirms, “Everyone needs water,”

There is anger among the Muslims of the village over the incident. The man in the video says, “We are very angry”. He blames it on some anti-social elements trying to disturb communal harmony. “We are observing lockdown by staying in our homes, but now are facing difficulties due to denial of access to water,” he laments.

The woman says they have not yet raised the issue with the authorities. If people “want to deny them access to tube well, so be it. Allah will arrange it for us from somewhere,” she asserts with confidence.

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