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Sena slams U’khand govt’s prayer break to Muslim staff

Mumbai: Shiv Sena today hit out at the Congress government in Uttarakhand for its decision to give a 90-minute break to Muslim employees in the state service for Friday prayers, and sought to know if similar concessions would be provided to Hindus as well.

The NDA constituent alleged that the decision was taken only to reap political benefits and wanted the Election Commission to take note of it since polls are due in the state next year.

The Uttarakhand government recently announced that a special 90-minute break will be given to the state employees from Muslim community for attending Friday prayers.

A cabinet meeting on Saturday chaired by Chief Minister Harish Rawat decided that a special break from 12.30 PM to 2 PM will be given to the employees from the community.

“The elections in Uttarakhand are around the corner and if the government has taken the decision to appease Muslim voters, the Election Commission should take notice of the state government’s decision,” an editorial in Sena’s mouthpiece ‘Saamana’ said.

“If a break can be given to Muslims to offer their prayers, then similar facility should be provided to Hindu employees for their prayers and fasts. Special privileges in the name of religion to government employees is a sign of deceit,” the party said.

The Sena also said that while Hindus get stuck with restrictions from the administration, the Muslims, in the name of votes, are given preferential treatment.

“The Supreme Court, in the case of an Air force officer, has clearly stated that religious activities for government work cannot be allowed. Yet, Uttarakhand government chose to take this decision,” it said.

PTI