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Volume down, mosque speaker moved after Allahabad V-C tells district her sleep gets disturbed

Allahabad University V-C Sangita Srivastava wrote to Prayagraj authorities on 3 March but the letter came to light only this week after it was widely shared on social media.

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Lucknow: A complaint from the Allahabad University Vice-Chancellor (V-C) has led the administration at the Lal Masjid in the Civil Lines area of Prayagraj (erstwhile Allahabad) to change the position of its loudspeaker and turn down its volume.

V-C Sangita Srivastava had written the letter to the district authorities on 3 March but it came to light only this week after the letter was widely shared on social media. Srivastava resides in Civil Lines, which is approximately four kilometres from the university campus.

In her letter, written on her official university letterhead, the Vice-Chancellor alleged that her “sleep is disturbed” by the “loud” azaan performed at the mosque daily. “… Everyday… at about 5.30 am, my sleep is disturbed due to loud Azan (sic) done on the mike… in the surrounding mosque. The sleep so disturbed does not resume even after trying very hard. This also results in a headache, throughout the day, causing losses in work hours,” she wrote.

She further cited a January 2020 Allahabad High Court order where the court said no religion advocates the use of loudspeakers for worship. The order came as a petitioner challenged an administrative order in UP’s Jaunpur that banned the use of loudspeakers for azaan.

“I am not against any religion, caste or creed. They may perform the Azan without the mike so that others are not disturbed,” she added. “Even before Eid, they announce Sehri on the mike at 4 am. This practice also creates disturbance to other people,” she wrote, quoting the adage, “Your freedom ends where my nose begins.” 

ThePrint reached Srivastava through calls for a comment but there was no response till the time of publishing this report.

Mosque administration coordinator Kalimur Rahman confirmed that they shifted the loudspeaker and reduced its volume after being contacted by the district administration. 

“’We have changed the position of the loudspeaker and also toned down the volume to hardly 50 per cent of its sound level,” he told ThePrint. The district administration, he said, had “asked us to sort out the issue and we did it very peacefully”.

 “If she had directly complained to us then it could have been solved earlier,” he added.

Also read: Allahabad High Court allows azaan recitation, says it does not violate lockdown rules

V-C criticised

Srivastava’s letter has come under criticism from several sections, for allegedly singling out the Muslim place of worship and focusing on personal matters at the cost of issues related to the campus. 

Shia cleric Maulana Saif Abbas released a statement where he said the V-C ought to have also complained about the morning aarti and kirtan performed by Hindus. The cleric asked the V-C to take back her complaint, saying “such complaints by someone with such a high post is not good”. The morning azaan, he added, hardly takes two to three minutes. 

Allahabad University student leader Akhilesh Yadav, who is the state president of the National Students Union of India (NSUI), described it as a “publicity stunt”.

“The V-C used the official letter-head to complain about a personal issue. There are a lot of other important issues going on related to students in the campus but her focus is not on the campus,” he said, adding, “She is busy solving her personal issues.”

Also read: Letter claiming Karnataka DGP ordered removal of speakers from mosques is fake, say police


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  1. If Azaan is disturbing the peaceful sleep what about the bells ring in temples and churches, the bhajans you put every morning doesn’t disturb the other community people. It is just a hatred towards one community. She is in a state of mind doesn’t want to hear the sounds coming from Masjid. It’s all depends on our mind which things to accept which not. Start accepting these things you will live a peaceful life. We have to respect all religions their beliefs traditions and sentiments not by hurting them. If you want to improve the condition then have a word with masjid authorities and suggest some alternative idea rather than filing a case.

  2. Azaan by loudspeaker is really not required one who wants to perform namaaz will do it irrespective of how azaan is given, one who tells it is required allah give him good sense it is due to the rigid attitudes particularly of the religious leaders that the common muslim is suffering, he or she is also responsible for the same, no use blaming modi shah or yogi muslim is the worst enemy of Islam due to arrogance and superiority complex

  3. I have 3 mosques surrounding my house which do azaan. I respect their religious traditions but came to know through this article that the loudspeaker is not a religious tradition. IN addition, one of the mosques which is within 300 meters of 2 hospitals, one of which is mine, does not stop with the azaan but continues with loud speeches and singing usually for an hour and this happens daily, not just on special occasions after every namaaz atleast 2-3 times a day. Sometimes, with no good reason this particular mosque does it at 11 P.M at night.
    My question is whether journalists do not consider this as public nuisance and report it. If they do not, they should explain why?
    An aarti or Kirtan are only morning times and mostly the speakers are not loud.

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