MOURNERS gathered at Jamia Ghosia Mosque in Chester Street, Audley, near Bilal Saddique’s family home, to offer up prayers yesterday.

Hussain Akhtar, a local councillor and community leader, joined Bilal’s uncle and father and scores of other relatives and friends at the mosque.

He said the community was trying to come to terms with the death of the 29-year-old.

“This is very sad news,” he said. “I was very sorry indeed to hear this news in my community.

“I am doing what I can to help the family, everyone is praying for them.”

Local councillor and former Blackburn mayor Salim Mulla also visited the mosque to pay his respects.

He said: “From the people I’ve spoken to, they said he was a very nice lad.

“He was a really good member of the community, a law abiding citizen, and a wonderful lad.

“We’re all shocked that something like that has happened to him. People still can’t believe it.

“He had a very good reputation as a young man, that’s what people have been saying to me in the community.”

Mr Saddique’s family was too distressed to speak about what had happened yesterday, but friends and members of the local community visited the family home throughout the day to pay their respects.

His friends also took to Facebook to pay tribute to him, and express their shock over his death. He was described by those who knew him as a quiet man, and a ‘nice guy’.

Donna Louise Riley said: “Bilal Saddique, the nicest man you would ever wish to meet. Will be sadly missed. Rest in peace Bil.

“A very good friend, kind, quiet, caring and sincere. There’s not many left like him and he will be missed.

“Prayers for Bilal and his family at this very sad time. RIP Bilal, never saw this coming.”

And Sharon Booth said “RIP, such a nice guy.”

Ganch Mohammed said: “Very sad news. Allah grant him jannah, he was an ace guy.”

And another friend said: “He was a top lad. Quiet, always kept his head down.”