Harikant Ahluwalia, Mayor of the Meerut Municipal Corporation did not allow 7 corporators to participate in a meeting after they had refused to sing Vande Mataram on Tuesday. Mayor Ahluwalia has reportedly also issued orders that anyone who refuses to sing Vande Mataram would be forbidden from participating in the corporation’s proceedings. According to IE, all the seven corporators, who belong to the minority community had left the building as just after the other members had started singing Vande Mataram. Nearly 90 contractors were reported present in the building but after the group of these 7 corporators returned to the hall, Mayor Ahluwalia forbids them from entering.
According to reports, when the Mayor was speaking about his decision on the consequences of singing Vande Mataram, other corporators present in the hall shouted slogans of ‘Hindustan me rehna hai to Vande Mataram Kehna hai’, which translates to ‘If you want to stay in India, you must say Vande Mataram’. Speaking to reporters, one of the 7 corporators, Afzal Saifi explained their side of the story and said that the mayor had ordered them to sing Vande Mataram, threatening to forbid them from the Sadan if they did nit comply. He said that they had refused to comply since the Mayor, who is also a BJP leader had given the orders very rudely. Safi said that he had the support of other corporators such as Shahid Abbas, Nawab Qureshi and Deewan Shareef among others.
The Mayor, Harikant Ahluwalia told IE, that they have almost 90 corporators out of which 18 were Muslims but only a few people had any problem in singing Vande Mataram. Ahluwalia further added that he had earlier informed the former Samajwadi Party government about the activities of these 7 men but the Akhilesh Yadav-government had not taken any actions. The Mayor said that he would not let it happen any longer. he alleged that the corporators who had failed to sing Vande Mataram were from the Samajwadi Party.