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Friday, April 25, 2008

Harassment of Muslims acquires a new dimension

You just need to read the following instances to get an idea how an entire community is maligned by the State and its machinery through smart media manipulation:

1. Madhya Pradesh police claimed that terrorist camps were organised near Choral in Malwa region. All national papers and electronic channels, as usual, accepted the claims. Local Hindi newspaper 'Prabhat Kiran' (and later other papers too) in Indore exposed the claims and told the real story that there was no camp ever held.

The policemen had organised a 'live raid' and arms had been hidden by policemen themselves earlier, in order to later recover them and prove that they had caught anti-nationals who were planning a major strike. The police's story fell flat and the SP had to go on leave due to embarrassment but this truth about the fabricated story was never printed in national media. Channels ignored it.

2. A journalist, Nadeem Ahmad, who represented fortnightly English newspaper Milli Gazette, had gone to cover riots at Sarangpur in MP. His editor asked him to also go to the region and cover this issue. The police caught him for no fault of his.

They didn't tell him reason for his arrest, kept him in confinement in police station in Khargone for 48 hrs and only when local papers published the news of police 'abducting' him, and his editor planned to file habeas corpus in Supreme Court, that he was forced to board a bus and sent back. He was not allowed to go to the places where he had to for reporting.

Nadeem did have a beard. Was this his fault? He was told that there was suspicion that he was a SIMI activist, though he had his identification cards. Could they have dared stop a journalist of say, Dainik Jagran or Indian Express! Again this was not reported in mainstream media.

3. Some SIMI activists were caught near Indore. Soon police in every district were catching SIMI activists. Innocent guys who were not at all related were caught. They included professionals, whose careers and jobs have been jeopardised.

Mind you, once caught for any section under IPC, but in the name of SIMI, a person is branded 'terrorist' by police and the media buys the story immediately. It's a different matter that the districts police forces were just doing that to show their performance in the state headed by a BJP government. Courts have started acquitting many of the accused as there were no charges at all. But who cares?

Muslims are too afraid to speak up. Always expected to prove their patriotism, how can they speak for any person who has been branded a terrorist. Solely it was the Communist Party that did speak on the issue and said that it was an effort to communalise the situation in the election year, with an eye on vote. Cops are fetching money from those who are arrested and it's good extortion business.

4. Now those caught are mostly poor who have no connections. They don't have money or resources. And the jingoistic Bar Councils have decided that no lawyer would be allowed to fight their cases. A lawyer from Ujjain dared to go. But he was beaten up by a group of Hindutva organisation in the court, in the presence of police. Isn't it the end of road?

5. Now the story behind SIMI arrests is also political. The BJP MLA wanted to grab the grave yard land. He called the Chief Minister for 'bhumi puja' on this land but when he came and faced protest, the MLA was pulled up by CM for misleading him. The MLA was upset with the local Muslims and pressurised the police to arrest his 'opponents'. Scores were sent behind bars and the police claimed that they were all 'mischievous elements'. All in the name of democracy, justice and, in a free society, where the media is fair. But this also escaped the media in Delhi and Mumbai.

What is the option for Muslims? Shouldn't media write on this major issue. How a police force could fake a terrorist camp? That's a serious matter and everybody needs to ponder over that. Of course, any member of a banned organisation like SIMI ought to be arrested and put behind bars. But not innocents (again I insist, poor) should be victimised by the state, police, lawyers, media and everybody.

Read the report about journalist Nadeem Ahmad's arrest in Central Chronicle.

[I generally avoid writing tales of such persecution and harassment on this blog, as I feel, all the time writing about such things, brings the 'victim complex'. And that there should be positive stories and more posts on harmony. But when things go so bad. What should one do?]

Photos: Journalist Nadeem Ahmad

14 comments:

Isha' said...

And even in this situation we hate each other.

Sunnis hate Shi'a. Shi'a hate sunni.

Deobandi hates Bareili, Bareili hates Deobandi.

Conservatives hate Progressives, Progressives hate Conservatives.

I have seen conservatives trying to silence progressives saying you have no authority to speak for Islam. Progressives try to block out conservatives thinking he is a relic from the past- and only that.

My Allah guide us to love, and compassion.

madhur said...

What should police do then??? Waiting for innocent SIMI persons to implement there plans...and mind you this is not the first time simi is caught involved in such activities, thats why its banned. So, what should be the role of police, just sit back assuming there cant be any terrorist activity from till now safe zones like Indore etc.

Even the abduction story does NOT seems like harassment of Muslims as police must maintain peace in state while investigating and any sensitive and exaggerated writing can lead to communal riots in no time which I believe every human (even animals) will hate....

My request to Indian Muslim's is just to be patient and have faith in country's law system, if there are innocent they will get all respect lost due to few miscreants in some time.......

May almighty grace us True wisdom to understand Humanity
P.S. Mr.Author
Watch movie "Khuda Ke Liye" u will get a lesson

indscribe said...

Madhur,
It's good that you have taken time to write. But couldn't you have been more rational.
This blog is about humanism. Any member of a banned organisation has to be arrested, which I have written, but when innocent poor youths are arrested for no fault, it shoould affect you as well.

When civil society becomes so apathetic, it happens with everybody, not just Muslim or any other section. Whoever is weaker gets the beating.

What was the fault of journalist? Is faking a terrorist camp a small crime?

Indian Muslims are patient. Lawyers are not allowed to stand up for them. All courts are not like Supreme Court.

At district courts the situation is unimaginable and people languish in jails.

The problem is that Muslims are are demonised too much. We have inherited this virus from West.

When we were allies of Russia, everything in India was attributed to CIA.

Now we are all Shining Indias, aspiring to be reach and look at US as the ultimate great power, every bad thing is attributed to Muslims.

Naseer said...

While most Hindu terrorists who killed hundreds of Muslims in Gujraat are roaming freely and bragging about killing, Other Hindu racists are hand picking few Muslims and implanting fake evidence against them.

http://www.tehelka.com/story_main35.asp?filename=Ne031107spycam_videos.asp

There is big conspiracy going on for killing and demonizing more Muslims, They want to eliminate Muslims.

Anonymous said...

I agree that this is very disturbing - we need to be vigilant about protecting the secular fabric of our nation. This means that we cannot prejudge people on their identity (religious, linguistic or regional).

subhash said...

Hi,
My request to Indian Muslim's is just to be patient and have faith in country's law system, if there are innocent they will get all respect lost due to few miscreants in some time.......May almighty grace us True wisdom to understand Humanity.

subhash pandey
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arohan said...

it is shcoking. actually corruption has ensured that we don't have good officers now and then they indulge in such things to show performance. but this graveyard thing is unknown to me, where did it happen? indore, ujjain , bhopal???
kindly mail detials to me at bittuagrwl@gmail.com

Anonymous said...

this is directed at Mr madhur. ignorance is no excuse for your comments on the situation of false arrests.and please dont call muslims, indian or otherwise. i dont think we hindus are referred to as indian hindus now are we? i am sure you wont appreciate being arrested on false charges in any country which you choose to reside in and then tell yourself to have patience and fortitude. i would love to hear you speak about illegal confinement in the name of keeping peace when you are at the receiving end of it. is that what a democracy is about? shame on us for even considering the possibility let alone supporting it. i am a devout hindu and an unflinching indian and to think of abusing God and country like this is against religion and patriotism.

Kiran sai said...

What would police gain from harrassing muslim youth? please answer this question and there is no malicous intent for this.

indscribe said...

@ Kira Sai: I perfectly understand when you ask it. Somehow the Muslim became the 'other', else why would policemen on their own kill hundreds in Hashimpura and Maliana.

Now how and why they are so communal. It's a subject of research. Kindly read this book 'Combating Communal Conflict: Peception of Police Neutrality' which is now part of syllabus in Police Training Academies.

Secondly, the attitude of cops in general is that of extortionists and bullies. They only bully them who can be intimidated either due to lack of conections, awareness or money.

It is the same with Dalits, poor in general, tribal and other margial sections. In case of Muslims, there is a further communal angle.


You must be aware the way policing is done in India. It doesn't work on evidences, forensic and scientific investigation or proper police methods.

If there is a crime, catch all the poor people around--round up people living in a bastee, interrogate them, take names of suspicious persons, detain them, then as they pay, they are let off, if real culprit is caught, fine else someone is framed. Media is also happy that someone has been arrested and case closed.

Who cares what will happen in court. That's how the system works. It's basically anti-poor. You go to a police station, they ask you what you do. This is an innocent question but the cop gauges your social stratum and connections, and then behaves because he knows that an educated man can drag him to cout, approach his superior or go to journos.

So they pick on poor or lower middle class. Indian police continues to be governed by the act of 1861 that was made to rule the natives by British. That's the irony. Upper class and educated middle-class don't face haarassment much, as they can get things done through connections or paying extra money, so they don't care an have no experience of this sort of behaviour.

Anonymous said...

Link to Vibhuti Narayan Rai's book

http://www.vedamsbooks.in/no55306.htm

Suneet Yadav said...

dear ....there is no doubt that SIMI is terrorist group...

The Mindset said...

SIMI is in fact a terrorist group...so what if ONE Muslims man has been cought. It happens with many others. Police has to perform their duty.
Many people are behind bars for no reason, shouls everybody come out against Police.
Please be rational before writing anything

islam said...

it should be one islam! not sunni shia!