Tripura: Christian prayer hall on restricted ‘holy’ land dismantled (East Mojo)

The incident coincided with Durga Puja, the biggest festival of the Hindus in the state.

Representational image

By Mrinal Banik / East Mojo

Agartala: A prayer hall-like makeshift structure of the Christian community was “arbitrarily” dismantled at a Jamatia tribe-inhabited village called Kamlai in Ampi under the Amarpur subdivision of Gomati district. The structure was dismantled as it reportedly fell within the jurisdiction of the “holy boundaries” of the area that was used for Ker Puja, traditionally performed in August.

The incident coincided with Durga Puja, the biggest festival for Hindus in the state. The police officials said the structure needed to be cleared as it was constructed on government land where as per law no encroachment should be permitted.

“As soon as we were apprised of the situation prevailing in the village, we reached there and convened a peace meeting between the villagers of both the communities. Sub-divisional magistrate Ampi was also informed to take proper action against the violators. After the meeting, the issue was amicably resolved but anticipating further trouble sufficient Tripura State Rifles troopers and cops were deployed for the whole night,” SDPO Ampi Uttam Banik said.

The Kamlai village is home to about 150 Jamatia families. While the majority practice the Hindu religion, about 25 families follow the Christian faith.

To perform their religious rituals, the Christian villagers constructed a makeshift prayer hall in the government land but faced objections from their Hindu neighbours. The Hindus argued that the prayer hall falls under the boundaries of Ker Puja land.

The video of the structure getting dismantled by the local villagers went viral on social media platforms, also giving wind to rumours of violent face-offs between the two communities.

The police administration, however, denied any reports of clashes.

This story was originally published in . Read the full story here

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