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Cllr Atiqul Hoque Becomes First Muslim Mayor in Salisbury

Salisbury City Council has elected Cllr Atiqul Hoque as the 762nd mayor of the city, making history as the first British Bangladeshi Muslim to assume the position in the cathedral city in the southern English county of Wiltshire.

The announcement, made on Saturday, May 13, came in an event attended by more than 200 civic dignitaries including mayors from neighboring towns and cities, who witnessed the handover of the mayoral chain from Cllr Tom Corbin to Cllr Hoque, Salisbury Journal reported.

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“The people of Salisbury have made history by choosing their first British Bangladeshi Muslim mayor which simply demonstrates how Salisbury has become more diverse and welcoming,” Cllr Hoque said.

“I’m hopeful my mayorship will encourage others to come forward and engage with Salisbury City Council. 

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“Salisbury has been through some tough times recently, from the Novichok incident to the pandemic, and now the time has come for us to put all of this behind us. I hope to promote what our beautiful medieval city has to offer; I will stand alongside businesses and help our high street flourish.”

The mayor’s charity for 2023-2024 will be Salisbury and Wilton Rotary Clubs, Salisbury Hospice and Wilton RDA.

Many Muslims have achieved new political milestones recently in England.

Last year, West Sussex’s Worthing Borough appointed councilor Henna Chowdhury as the borough’s first female Muslim mayor.

The City of Bolton also elected Cllr Akhtar Zaman as its mayor in May 2022, becoming the first Muslim and first person of Asian descent to hold the post.

Earlier this month, Cllr Tafheen Sharif became the first Muslim mayor of Tameside, a metropolitan borough of Greater Manchester.