Tikapur Municipality sans Muslim graveyardMuslims in Tikapur Municipality, Kailali, have been facing difficulties in performing their death rituals as the municipality does not have a Muslim graveyard.
Muslims in Tikapur Municipality, Kailali, have been facing difficulties in performing their death rituals as the municipality does not have a Muslim graveyard.
Around 400 Muslims who reside in Tikapur have said that they have been compelled to go to India to perform the final rituals. “We have to take dead bodies to India as there’s no Muslim graveyard here,” said Akbar Ali Kuresi, a local of Tikapur.
“A Muslim woman died in Tikapur a few days ago. We had to take her to Tikuniya, India, for the final rites,” said Akbar. He also claimed that the Indian nationals often obstruct them while burying dead bodies in their soil. “There’s no available land in Tikapur to build a Muslim graveyard,” he said.
Muslims leaders said the problem arose after people encroached upon land that was separated for graveyard and converted it into private and commercial space. “We are worried. If our loved ones die, we don’t know where to perform their final rituals,” said Hasanem Kuresi, a local man.
According to Akbar, Almost half a century ago, Muslims were brought to Tikapur to work as butchers. The then Minister of Home Affairs and Founder of Tikapur Khadga Bahadur Singh had managed land for their residence, Masjid, Kalbala and cemetery. Singh had separated around 3 bighas of land on the bank of Jamara canal for the Muslim population. However, the area is currently occupied by squatters and there’s no space left for graveyard construction, said Akbar.
Muslims of Tikapur said they have requested local political parties and their leaders to provide them with land for constructing graveyard, but to no avail. “We will construct a cemetery if the government allocates a land for us,” said Akbar.