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'Attacked in His Sleep': Brother of Naib Imam Killed in Gurugram Mosque Violence

"He was leaving for Bihar the same day. I told him to cancel his ticket, fearing for his safety," his brother said.

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"He had a reservation on the Sampark Kranti Express the same day (1 August). But I told him to cancel the ticket after what happened on the Jaipur-Mumbai Central Express train, where an RPF (Railway Protection Force) jawan shot four people dead, and the violence that unfolded in Nuh the night before... Now Allah has called him back," Shadab Anwar, the elder brother of the naib imam killed in a Gurugram mosque, told The Quint.

Hafiz Saad was the deputy imam of the Anjuman Jama Masjid in Gurugram's Sector 57 that was set ablaze by a mob on the morning of 1 August, as the violence that first erupted in Haryana's Nuh spread to other parts of the state.

Saad, who was in his early 20s, was killed, allegedly by the mob. "The doctors said that there were injury marks due to a bullet and a knife. But we don't know where the bullet hit him or where he was attacked with a knife. We will know better after the post-mortem report on Wednesday (2 August)," Shadab added.

The police has not commented on the bullet injury so far.

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A Resident of Bihar's Sitamarhi, Unmarried

Saad, 22, was a resident of Pandaul Buzurg village in Bihar's Sitamarhi district. He is survived by his parents, four brothers, and three sisters.

"Saad studied in Chhatarpur, Mehrauli, and Azadpur for a few days, and became a Hafiz-e-Quran (memoriser of Quran). He was not married yet, and was apponited as naib imam of the Anjuman Jama Masjid nearly eight months ago. His monthly earning was about Rs 11,000," his brother said.

Shadab lives in Gurugram, too, and takes Arabic and Urdu tuitions for children in his neighbourhood to make a living.

'He Was Attacked in His Sleep'

"The incident occurred between 12 am and 12.30 am. I had spoken to him over the phone at 11.30 pm when I advised him to cancel his ticket in Sampark Kranti Express, fearing for his safety," Shadab added.

The next phone call that Shadab received brought the fateful news.

At around 1.30 am, he received a call – and the caller asked him to come to a nearby hospital (W Pratiksha Hospital) immediately where his brother was taken after he had been injured, Shadab recounted.

"I could not go at night because of the violence. I rushed to the hospital in the morning. The doctors at the hospital told me that my brother had been shot at, and was attacked with a knife as well. We have lodged an FIR (First Information Report)."
Shadab

On 1 August, the police had identified the accused, and conducted raids in different parts of Gurugram to arrest them. An FIR has been registered in the incident, the police said.

Shadab further said that his brother was attacked in his sleep.

"There were five people in the mosque. Two of them were sleeping at one place, and three others were sleeping in a separate spot. My brother was one of the two. The other person, Khurshid Alam, was the caretaker of the mosque. My brother and Khurshid were attacked by the mob directly. Khurshid was also shot at – and is in the ICU now," he said.

Apart from being a caretaker, Khurshid installed tiles to make a living.

"We are going back home to Bihar to conduct Saad’s last rites. We have been provided an ambulance by the mosque and the people of Jamiat Ulema-e-Hind," Shadab said.

(The article will be updated with details from the FIR and the post-mortem report as soon as they are available.)

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