Official handover for new Muslim cemetery

Above: Muhammad Rashid and Haji Rafique Choudhry (WEC) and Maqbul Rasul of the Glasgow Central Mosque with ERC leader Jim Fletcher, Jim Murphy MP and Ken Macintosh MSP. Below: WEC and GCM representatives. Bottom: a map of the new cemetery area.
Above: Muhammad Rashid and Haji Rafique Choudhry (WEC) and Maqbul Rasul of the Glasgow Central Mosque with ERC leader Jim Fletcher, Jim Murphy MP and Ken Macintosh MSP. Below: WEC and GCM representatives. Bottom: a map of the new cemetery area.

East Renfrewshire’s Muslim community has a new, dedicated cemetery space in operation.

As reported in 2013, East Renfrewshire Council unanimously agreed on a £169,000 investment to develop a new, dedicated burial ground in Cathcart Cemetery — a move described by Professor Amir Hussain, of the Woodfarm Education Centre, as an “historic achievement for the Muslim community”.

Now, the community has almost 2,000 burial spaces, allowing family members to pay their respects on home turf.

Professor Hussain told The Extra: “The Muslim community is indebted to all elected ER representatives, particularly council leader Jim Fletcher, as well as MP Jim Murphy and MSP Ken Macintosh, for supporting our community’s long-standing need for developing cemetery space in East Ren. The community is now finally able to bury their loved ones closer to home.”

ERC leader Fletcher commented: “I would like thank WEC trustees Mr Muhammad Rashid and Professor Hussain for their proposal, which the council has been pleased to support.

“I am delighted to give further good news of the council approving £40,000 in its capital programme to refurbish the car park below Burns Grove, with WEC covering any balance of the costs.”

In the absence of funeral prayer services in East Ren, WEC has partnered with the Glasgow Central Mosque in order to manage burials — although this will change when the WEC facility is extended.

Jim Murphy added: “I am delighted that Muslim families now have the space to properly respect those who have passed.

“It has taken a long time to achieve but I know it is very welcome.”