Peo­ple in UP vil­lage face a ‘ grave’ prob­lem

◗ Chah Pokhar, a Mus­lim- dom­i­nated vil­lage, has no grave­yard; the one they had, has been sub­merged into a pond

The Asian Age - - Nation - AMITA VERMA

In their prayers, they do not ask for wealth and hap­pi­ness — all they ask for is two yards of land top bury their dead.

The Chah Pokhar vil­lage in Ach­n­era on the Agra- Jaipur high­way in Agra district has a unique prob­lem. This Mus­lim- dom­i­nated vil­lage has no grave­yard; the one they had, has been sub­merged into a pond.

The vil­lage head, Sun­der Singh, said, “It has been months since we have been ask­ing the district of­fi­cials to al­lo­cate land for a grave­yard in the out­skirts of the vil­lage, but no ac­tion has been taken. Peo­ple are forced to bury the dead be­hind their own houses”.

Ac­cord­ing to Sun­der Singh, the Chah Pokhar vil­lage has a pop­u­la­tion of 3300 with the ma­jor­ity be­long­ing to Mus­lim com­mu­nity. “To­day, ev­ery sec­ond house has a grave by its side and chil­dren and women, of­ten, are afraid to ven­ture out be­cause of hor­ror sto­ries that do the rounds. We have sent in­nu­mer­able let­ters to the district mag­is­trate and ad­di­tional DM but there has been re­sponse”, he said.

Ac­cord­ing to re­ports, some mis­chievous el­e­ments in the vil­lage spread tales about the dead walk­ing around on moon­less nights and claim to be hear­ing strange voices. “Be­cause of this some women and chil­dren have even fallen ill and peo­ple in­sist that it is the im­pact of evil spir­its. The whole vil­lage is in the grip of a base­less fear”, the vil­lage head said. no

The vil­lagers have now sent a let­ter to chief min­is­ter Yogi Adityanath in this re­gard, seek­ing his in­ter­ven­tion, but it has al­ready been a fort­night and there has been no re­sponse.

Mean­while, sub- divi­sional mag­is­trate Arun Ku­mar said that he was ap­prised of the mat­ter and ef­forts are on to ear­mark another piece of land as grave­yard as the one ear­marked ear­lier has been sub­merged into a pond.

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