FB used to muster Karbala crowd

 Social networking sites and posters were put to use to urge youths across the country to come to the capital on Monday to protest over the `grabbing' of Karbala land.

A day after the parts of the city were brought to a standstill by around 1,500 protestors, the Anjuman-e-Haideri has now threatened a nation-wide agitation and announced that they will try to meet Congress president Sonia Gandhi again on March 31.

Shia groups have demanded the arrest of Congress President Sonia Gandhi’s political secretary Ahmed Patel, alleging his involvement in the dispute over south Delhi’s Karbala.

They allege that, despite a Delhi High Court order, illegal commercial activities are being carried out at Karbala. In posters pasted at mosques and uploaded on Facebook, it is claimed that Patel was also behind the arrest of 10 Muslim clerics on February 2.

“The arrested people had been protesting against illegal possession of Wakf Board land,” the poster claims. Another poster said: “Fight For Karbala, Come And Join Us March 10”. The plan was to assemble outside All India Congress Committee office in central Delhi’s Akbar Road by 11 am on Monday.

On Tuesday, Maulana Kalbe Jawad, General Secretary of Majlis-e-Ulema-e-Hind and Patron of Anjuman-e-Haideri, criticised Delhi Police.

“We had planned to meet Gandhi regarding the issue and were looking forward to a peaceful meeting. However, authorities including police shut down Delhi Metro stations and blocked the National Highway so that we don't reach the venue,” Jawad said.

He said all the offices of Congress across Uttar Pradesh will be gheraoed if the issue is not resolved by March 31. Before that, Anjuman-e-Haideri will start an agitation in Amethi and Raebareli, Lok Sabha constituencies of Rahul Gandhi and Sonia Gandhi in UP.

“Last year, Sonia Gandhi, Patel and former Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit had announced that a committee will be formed to resolve the issue within 10 days. But we are yet to reach a final solution,” Jawad added.

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