After the controversy erupted over a call given by pro-Hindu outfits to evacuate all Muslims doing business near the temples, gaurillankeshnews.com decided to gauge the opinions of Hindu traders doing business near mosques in Bangalore city for decades.
The objective was to know whether these Hindu traders have ever been troubled by Muslims for doing business near the mosques. Here are the excerpts of the interview of some of the Hindu traders who are doing business near the mosque.
“ Many Muslims who are passing by this road, do business with us. I have set up my business near the Masjid itself, yet till date no Muslim has ever asked me not to set up stall near the mosque. No one should trouble poor people in the name of religion”, said Krishna, one of the traders who is native of Mandya district.
Selling lime and other vegetables for nearly eight years near Basavanagudi mosque in his pushcart, he is upset with the developments taking place where Muslims are being forced to remove shops set up near temples.
The Kazi street of Basavanagudi in Bengaluru always bustles with crowds which only swell during the present Ramzan month. The traders, mainly the fruit vendors, are doing brisk business during this holy month.
In the shops located in the basement of the mosque, people of Hindu and Muslims community to business without any problem.
In one of the shops, a Hindu family has been doing business for the last 42 years. Rupa Raghavendra who is doing tailoring work, says that her father in law has been doing tailoring work for over four decades.
“ Now, my husband and I have continued this occupation. The shop belongs to the mosque, yet no Muslim has ever troubled us. They have always been friendly with us. But we are extremely disappointed with the news that Muslims are being forced not to do business near temples”, she said.
Claiming that she has more Muslims customers than Hindu, she said that unnecessary controversy is being created to divide people. “ People have already lost their earnings because of the COVID pandemic. Let people to live and earn don’t bring religion in that”, she appealed.
A stall of Nandini milk products is located opposite the Mosque. When talked to Sunanda, who was in the shop, said that her husband has been doing the business for nearly 25 years. People of Hindu and Muslims live harmoniously. She too claimed that the majority of their customers are Muslims.
Dhanalaksmi, a woman of Salem district in Tamil Nadu also has set up a fruit stall near the masjid for the last ten years. “ The relation between me and Muslims here has developed so strong that they inquire if I remain absent even for a day. This is the concern they have about me and my family”, she said.
S.A Khadar, one of the customers who is regularly purchasing fruits from these Hindu traders, said that he has been purchasing fruits from Hindu sellers for several years.
Sharing his views, Mohammed Sharif, a local resident said that there is simply no objection for people of any community to do business near the Masjid. “ In fact nobody bothered about their religion”, he said.
He opined that the government should treat everyone equally without discriminating among the people.