New Delhi: Hours after Delhi’s popular Jama Masjid issued an order imposing a ban on the entry of women coming there alone or in groups on Thursday, Jama Masjid's Shahi Imam has agreed to withdraw the order restricting entry of women in the mosque. The withdrawal comes after Delhi Lieutenant General V K Saxena spoke to the Imam him and requested him to take back the decree, new agency PTI quoted Raj Niwas sources as saying. Shahi Imam Bukhari agreed to revoke the order, on the condition that visitors respect and maintain the sanctity of the mosque, as per the Raj Niwas sources. "When women come alone, improper acts are done, videos get shot, this ban is to stop all of that. Making it a meeting point is not apt for religious places. No restrictions are there on families or married couples," Sabiullah Khan, Jama Masjid's PRO said to ANI on the ban.
The Jama Masjid administration has also posted warning signs outside the mosque notifying tourists that girls are not allowed inside. The sign boards are located outside the mosque's three entrances.
"Girls/women are not permitted to enter Jama Masjid alone," read the signboards. However, women will be permitted to enter the Mosque with their husbands or families, according to the masjid administration.
Delhi LG VK Saxena spoke to Shahi Imam Bukhari of Jama Masjid,requested him to rescind the order restricting the entry of women in Jama Masjid. Imam Bukhari has agreed to revoke the order, with the request that visitors respect& maintain sanctity of the Mosque: Raj Niwas sources pic.twitter.com/Pmeg3j4WoN — ANI (@ANI) November 24, 2022
The notices, which have no date, came up a few days ago outside the three main entry gates, sources in the administration said. However, it has come to attention only now.
The move has evoked a sharp response from several quarters with people calling it a "fundamentalist mentality." Reacting to it, Delhi Commission for Women's (DCW) chief Swati Maliwal issued a notice to the Imam of Jama Masjid, saying that "no one has the right to ban the entry of women like this."
Meanwhile, The National Commission for Women (NCW) on Thursday also asked the Centre and the Delhi government to take appropriate action against the ban on the entry of 'girls' into the Jama Masjid here, calling it gender-biased and a violation of fundamental rights of women worshippers.
(With agency inputs)