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Police called to Luton mosque after row erupts between crowd of 250
26 October 2020, 19:47
Police were called out to a Mosque in Luton after a row erupted involving up to 300 'worshippers'— 𝐒𝐭𝐞𝐩𝐡𝐞𝐧 🇬🇧 (@LFC_blano) October 26, 2020
One local resident said "How is this allowed to happen? Christmas is approaching fast, is it ok to have large gatherings and parties?"https://t.co/8CHF40mYLT pic.twitter.com/nimHR2wqo0
Police were forced to break up a disturbance at a Luton mosque which involved around 250 people.
Video footage showed chaotic scenes inside the Luton mosque as people are seen not social distancing.
A council officer estimated the crowd being around 250-300 people were present at the time.
The row broke out on Friday, it is alleged, after an internal dispute within the committee behind the mosque.
Mosque secretary Syedul Islam Khan said he was unexpectedly removed from his position by other members of the committee, Luton News reports.
He returned to the mosque on Friday but claimed other members of the committee objected to his presence and called the police.
One member of the public complained to Luton Today: "As a resident living in Luton, we all have to play our part during Covid-19. The views from the community are that the Mosque knew in advance that there were going to be disruptions and police were also informed in advance.
"So how come this was allowed to happen? Doesn't this make Luton a great example of bad practice to others?"
Bedfordshire Police said in a statement: "Bedfordshire Police was called to reports of a disturbance at Jalalabad Jame Masjid on Leagrave Road in Luton, shortly after 1.30pm on Friday (23 October), where an altercation was in progress. Officers attended the scene and spoke to those present. No offences were reported.
"Officers engaged with those at the location regarding Covid-19 guidelines and reminded them of the importance of following the guidance.
"The force's community cohesion team, along with representation from Luton Council, will continue to work this week with the mosque leaders and committee to ensure guidance is adhered to."
Luton is currently in Tier 1, meaning there are no restrictions.
However, Luton council is applying to enter Tier 2 restrictions.