In what seems to be like the medieval Muslim practice where Islamic rulers imposed tax on non-Islamic population for just existing, a picture has surfaced on social media which shows ‘Oor Tharagu’ (town brokerage in English) being levied on vehicles by the Jamaat in Vadakarai near Senkottai in Tenkasi district.

A Twitter user posted a picture saying that the Jamaat in Vadakarai village is collecting fees from vehicles entering the town. The tariff list shows ₹40 being levied for lorries, ₹30 for mini-lorries, ₹25 for auto rickshaws, ₹15 for handdriven carts, ₹10 for cycle.

Many on Twitter expressed shock over the incident. However, some have said that it could be a parking fee charged on vehicles parking inside the mosque. There is no clarity on what purpose this fee is being levied yet.

It is to be noted that the population of Vadakarai is predominantly Muslim. According to the Census 2011, 65% of the town comprises of Muslims.

The Indu Makkal Katchi (IMK) has said that there are many such incidents happening across Tamil Nadu in Muslim majority areas where some sort of fee is levied on non-Muslim population living in the area. The IMK spokesperson said that many businesses owned by non-Muslims in and around mosques of Ramanathapuram are being made to pay such fee to the mosques.

“IMK has been voicing out against these for a long time, but we are being called communal if we bring to light such issues.”, he said.

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