“I Hate What Happened In Bangladesh…But Pains To See Our Mosque Burnt”: Locals of Darga Bazaar Recount Horror

“I have been living here for 38 years now, in my entire lifetime, I haven’t seen something like this happening before. This violence is new for all of us, this burning of temple and mosques”, says Alamgir Hussain.


About 2300 Kilometres from National Capital Delhi, Tripura a state in North-East India witnessed a series of violence directed at the state’s minority community. The violence that erupted on October 19, continued unabated for 8 days which saw sporadic incidents of burning and damaging of mosques, shops and houses belonging to Muslims.

The rather peaceful state where both Hindus and Muslims have co-existed in harmony for the past several decades saw such wide-scale communal violence probably for the first time. The attacks on Muslims localities followed large rallies organized by Hindu groups such as Vishwa Hindu Parishad and Hindu Jagran Manch in the state to protest the attacks on the Hindu community in Bangladesh.

More than two weeks later, the police have arrested only six people related to different communal incidents. However. it has slapped the stringent UAPA on 102 individuals including Supreme Court lawyers and journalists for highlighting Tripura violence on social media, a move that has invited criticism from all quarters.

Despite the incriminating emerging details, and allegations of lack of police actions, the Tripura Violence received little to no attention in the Indian Mainstream News.

HW News reached Ground Zero to find out what transpired during the week-long violence in Tripura.

While the majority of the incidents of violence are centred in the Northern part of Tripura, mosques in different parts of the state were targeted too. Some of these incidents were, however, underreported.


Tripura Darga Bazaar Mosque was vandalized on 19th October by unknown miscreants/ Swarna Jha


One such mosque that was damaged during the Tripura communal violence was the Darga Bazaar mosque. Although pictures of the vandalism in the mosque surfaced all over social media, none could independently verify the claims made on the internet. Adding to it, the state also imposed Section 144 in different areas which made it even more impossible for media outlets to dig out the truth.

On 11th November, when HW News reached the Darga Bazaar area in the Gomti district, locals gathered to narrate the plight witnessed on 19th October midnight. A small-size mosque with an alvester ceiling was completely burnt off, the fan was broken into pieces, while the surrounding was fully covered in ashes. A copy of the Quran, the holy book of Islam, was lying amid the ashes, its pages burnt.

Mizaun Rehman, a resident of the Darga Bazaar area who used to visit the masjid daily to offer namaz told HW News how he has no other choice but to pray at his house since the burning of the masjid took place on 19th October night. “Late at night, around 2:30 on 19th October, somebody came and burnt down the whole masjid. Rakesh, my cousin brother who stays near the mosque was up late at night and saw the flames engulfing the mosque. As soon as he saw the masjid was set on fire, he immediately called the police and the fire brigade”, added Mr Rehman.

On 20th October, an FIR was filed against the unidentified people who were part of this malicious act but locals say so far nothing has moved in the case. No arrests have been made in the case to date. The local BJP leader has, however, promised the locals that the party will rebuild the mosque and where the Muslim community can offer namaz but that too seemed like a far fetched dream.

The local Muslim community also demanded that the state govt rebuild the mosque. The local authorities assured the same but it has been 23 days now, and not even an inspection of the damaged site has been carried out.


A copy of the Quran with pages burnt lying amid the ashes. / Swarna Jha


Continuing to add, Mr Rehman said,” In my entire lifetime, I never saw such heinous crime nor heard of it. I demand that action should be taken as soon as possible and the name(s) of the person or people who damaged our mosque should come out in public”.

The locals who were regular visitors and used to offer namaz at Darga Bazaar mosque have been facing issues to offer prayers now. It was the sole masjid in their locality where the community used to gather and pray together. Now, most of them either pray inside their homes or travel to the masjid at a far distance for prayers.

Alamgir Hussain, who was a regular visitor at the mosque spoke to HW News. He said that he used to offer prayer at the Darga Bazaar mosque without fail but since this incident took place, he has to travel far away to another masjid to offer namaz.

“In my life span of 38 years, I never saw such violence erupting in Tripura. I hate people, my whole community hates people who targeted Hindus and burnt Hindu temples in Bangladesh. It shouldn’t have happened at any cost. It breaks my heart to see such an environment in Tripura, we are getting targetted”, added Mr Hussain.

“It pains to see my masjid getting burnt, the holy book, Quran getting burnt and turning into ashes. It’s doesn’t feel good. It doesn’t feel good”, cries Mr Hussain.


(This is the first of a multi-part series on Tripura Violence. In the next few days, HW News will publish more ground reports from Tripura.)

Follow our Tripura Violence Ground Report Here.


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