MUSLIM PUBLIC LOO FURY FURY has erupted after a shopping centre became the first in Britain to introduce Muslim-only toilets.
The Middle Eastern-style squat holes, just a hole in the ground, are common in Asia.
Two of the £200 “Nile pan” units have been put into the Exchange shopping centre in Rochdale, where one in five people is Asian.
But locals have blasted them as a waste of cash. One angry resident, Ellen Dean, 49, fumed: “I work in a bookies here and everyone who comes in is up in arms about them.
“They are totally unnecessary. Even the majority of the Muslims here don’t seem to want them.
“Most of the people of Rochdale won’t be able to use them and I guarantee elderly people will be totally confused by them.”
Cleaner Scott Hewitt, 36, added: “No-one can understand the point of these, they’re just a joke.
“A lot of the Muslims I know would be too embarrassed to use them.
“It’s like something from a Third World country.”
Even Rochdale councillor Daalat Ali said: “I’m a Muslim myself and I’ve never wanted anything different to anyone else. I don’t know why they’ve come up with this idea.”
The pans were installed after centre management attended a “cultural” training course with community activist Ghulam Rasul Shahzad.
Shahzad, an ex-Rochdale Council training officer, runs courses on “cultural understanding and community cohesion”.
He took shopping centre manager Lorenzo O’Reilly on a tour around the town’s Central Mosque, even showing him the loos. And Mr O’Reilly decided to provide one squat hole in the ladies’ and one in the gents’ for “cultural reasons”.
Mr Shahzad said: “The management were very committed to improving the service they offered to the community.
“We always work together to understand each other from both sides and find a balance. That is the beauty of Rochdale. That is why I am proud to be a Rochdalian.”
A spokeswoman for the shopping centre said: “When we were planning the toilets, this was something that cropped up.
“We think they’re the first in the country to be put in a shopping centre.”
In 2007 bakery giant Greggs installed similar toilets at their Scottish headquarters, despite the fact that no Muslims worked there. THE DAILY STAR