Skip to main content

Meerut, Muzaffarnagar: Bullets, lathis 'hit' Muslims, houses looted, Hindus also angry

By Vimal Bhai*
"Bring my son back". In a small room, Aalim's mother was crying. Next to her, Aalim's brother Salauddin said, "We want justice for everyone with whom something like this has happened." Municipal councilor Haji Noor Alam added, "The police was not giving the corpse back. We as well as the MLA had assured the police that we would bury the corpse in a small burial ground next to the house of a relative nearby. But they were reluctant."
Here, both Hindus and Muslims are angry about why innocent persons were being killed. The police was not giving Aalim's body, fearing people would block the road. Aalim's father raised both his hands: "Hindus and Muslims are very fond of each other here. I can see that when I go to the market. There is no problem here."
Aalim's brother showed a short video in which Aalim is seen making rotis. His physically challenged brother said he could make 400 rotis in an hour! But now the only bread earner has been killed. Running an e-rickshaw for livelihood, Aasif was shot dead on the chest.
Aalim's father said, no MP has reached up to them, there is no offer of compensation from the government. Like every day, Aasif had gone out to run his e-rickshaw at 10 am. On being shot, he died on the spot. The police called him a terrorist leader.
Mohammad Mohsin, 23, worked as a kabadi, junk seller. He would bring fodder for his animals on the same cart on which he would gather junk. He had gone to bring two sacks of fodder. He too was shot on the chest. He was alive for 40 minutes. But no hospital took him. The City Hospital also refused. The police said ambulance wouldn't be allowed in.
Mohsin's brother sought to know the reason from the police. First the SHO asked, "Are you accusing us?", but then said, "Yes we killed him." Mohsin too has been called a militant. What will be the future of his children now?
This is what happened with two of those who were killed in Fakhruddin Ali Ahmed Nagar and the nearby areas of Meerut. There is information that in all six persons were killed as a result of police firing in Meerut. Unconfirmed sources put the figure at 17. More than 10 were killed. Those who died were buried silently because of the terrible fear of the police.
If anyone is hurt, the police would call him a rioter. No postmortem would be reported. Nobody got any support even in hospitals. People say, the police would threaten those who tried to protest. They wouldn't be spared, they would be told: they would face prosecution, would rot in jail.
People know: Life must go on even if one eats two loaves in the shadow of fear. No one dares speak here openly about what has happened. Such is the atmosphere of panic that very few dare talk with newspaper reporters. On the streets, you would find bonfire at every nook at night. Young and elderly sit in a group around it. Because, at night the police might come anytime and pick up anyone found alone.
FIRs have been registered in Meerut against 4,000 unknown persons. Around 1,500 people were found squatting at a single police station. About 400 people have been put behind the bars. Names of 150 people involved in so-called riots have been registered in these FIRs. All of them belong to one locality. In a single night, people were identified so quickly. Clearly, the names were randomly taken from the voters' list.

Muzaffarnagar

Noor Mohammad, 30, was a labourer. He was shot in the head. He was quickly buried in Meerut. His pregnant wife couldn't be part of his funeral. Today she simply seeks justice.
There is a three-storey building right on the street near Meenakshi Chowk in the interior of Muzaffarnagar. Belonging to a relatively affluent family of the area, inside the main gate, one could see a broken car and luggage scattered all over.
Daughters on the first floor were scared. Those who attacked the house looted everything. They took away cash. No FIR has been registered. Government officials haven't cared to see what has happened.
People of Khalapar area near Meenakshi Chowk said, on the night of December 20, all the CCTV footages of vandalism were destroyed. Police went around from one house to another. The dacoit-like behaviour occurred in about 30 houses in Khalapar area and near Sarvat Gate.
Anything that could be broken was broken. Cash and jewelry were looted. No item, including fridge, TV, or AC, was spared. The police was accompanied by people in plain clothes. They had iron rods, sticks and bars with them. People haven't even thought of filing an FIR. Who would listen to them?
Even children in the madrasa for orphans were not spared. Kids aged eight and nine were beaten up. All this happened between 2.00 and 2.30 on the night of December 21-22. Some of the children have been released from the prison. The rest of yet to come back. No one dares to defy the way they are being treated.
A 72-year-old owner of a saw machine and his 13-year-old grandson were severely hit in the Sarwat Gate area. Their son is in jail. Two granddaughters were to be married on February 4. They now sit at home with head injury. Their dowry items have been destroyed. Jewelry and cash were robbed.
About 150 people attacked the house. They came twice, at 11:00 pm and then at 6:00 am the next day. Phone calls at night for help were of no help. The son was hit very badly. He was made to sign in the police station in an almost unconscious state. The family members' main concern is, how to get him back.
Nearly 150 people were kept in a large hall in the Civil Lines police station following the assault. These included children. One of them, on asking for water, was told by a cop, "Open the zip and give him urine." CCTV footage of this area has also been destroyed. People are unable to leave their home due to fear.
A committee under the chairmanship of the additional district officer has been formed in Muzaffarnagar, in front of whom application for compensation could be filed. But people have bad experiences of 2013. They know what happened to those dared complain. Nobody has any faith in getting justice from the authorities.
MP from Muzaffarnagar is Sanjeev Balyan, leader of the 2013 riots. He is now a minister of state in the Central government. He was very much present at several of the places where these incidents took place. He would be invariably accompanied by a number of his young colleagues and the police.
There is no police investigation. Everything appears to have happened in a planned manner, in accordance with instructions from the top. There have been statements of Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath that he would take revenge and teach lesson. There has been a lot of effort to religiousize all of it, but no Hindu-Muslim riots have happened.
The houses of Muslims were looted. They were hit with bullets and beaten up by sticks. There is fear of intimidation all around. This is what we saw in Muzaffarnagar and Meerut during our visit on December 27. It's a Yogi territory. The so-called yogis have become pioneers of militant Hindutva politics. Yogi appears to have forgotten: He became chief minister by taking the oath of the Constitution and not of the Hindu nation.
---
*With Aman Ki Pahal and National Alliance of People's Movements (NAPM), one of the 19 persons, including social workers Medha Patkar, Sandeep Pandey, Faisal Khan and lawyer Ehtesham, who visited the areas affected by police action in Meerut and Muzaffarnagar on December 27
This is free translation of the original Hindi article forwarded by NAPM to Counterview

Comments

TRENDING

Buddhist shrines were 'massively destroyed' by Brahmanical rulers: Historian DN Jha

Nalanda mahavihara By Our Representative Prominent historian DN Jha, an expert in India's ancient and medieval past, in his new book , "Against the Grain: Notes on Identity, Intolerance and History", in a sharp critique of "Hindutva ideologues", who look at the ancient period of Indian history as "a golden age marked by social harmony, devoid of any religious violence", has said, "Demolition and desecration of rival religious establishments, and the appropriation of their idols, was not uncommon in India before the advent of Islam".

Examples of support to Hindu temples, scriptures, saints by 'Muslim' rulers galore

Siya Ram coin issued by Akbar By Bharat Dogra* At a time when the country as well as the world are passing through very difficult times leading to more urgent need for strengthening national unity for meeting several big challenges ahead, unfortunately disputes relating to religious places have been allowed to raise their ugly head once again. It is well-realized by now by many people that it is not historical facts but narrow considerations of political gain and spreading of fanatic ideas of intolerance which are behind such mischief, but due to the increasing threat of mob violence and patronage available at higher levels to groups spreading intolerance many people are reluctant to openly and fearlessly express their views. Hence there is urgent need for broad-based peace committees with wider social support to spread the message of communal harmony and to appeal against the dangers of spreading false messages regarding places of worship which can ultimate

Gyanvapi case: Use of 'illegal' lawfare to keep the communal pot simmering

By Venkatesh Narayanan, Bobby Ramakant, Manoj Sarang* With a steady drumbeat of bad news for the lives of ordinary citizens --  inflation at a multi-year high , rupee at an all-time low , negative job creation and when all forward indicators as seen by industry leaders point to recessionary clouds on the horizon , what’s a serially-incompetent government to do?  Dust out their time-tested-citizen-distraction playbook. The Gyanvapi-Masjid case is all of this -- as a weapon of mass distraction. This zeitgeist of our times is best captured by a recent opinion piece : "The idea is to keep the pot on a perpetual boil, simmering at the top, whirling feverishly beneath. A restless society forever living precariously on the precipice arouses distrst, uneasiness, fear and discomfort, That is a toxic panoply for manufacturing rage, which can then be effortlessly mobilized at short notice. BJP is creating an eco-system of real-time instant delivery of hate-mongers. That is how we are sudde

This varsity succumbed to extra-academic mobocracy, 'ignored' Hindutva archives

By Shamsul Islam* Open letter to Sharda University vice-chancellor Sub: Discarding a Question on Linkages of Hindutva with Nazism/Fascism is blatant Academic Dishonesty! Dear Professor Sibaram Khara Saheb, Namaskaar! According to your esteemed University’s portal: “The name of University, 'Sharda' is synonymous to 'Goddess of knowledge and learning-Saraswati'. She is identified with 'veena', an Indian musical instrument and the ‘lotus’, where she resides. The lotus in our logo symbolizes the seat of learning that the University is created for.  "Variety of colours signify the variety of disciplines the university offers and the overlap between petals creating new colours demonstrate the ethos of collaboration between students and teachers of different programme, nationality, creed and colour working towards creating new knowledge…the University's cherished mission to provide education beyond boundaries and to facilitate the students and faculty to achie

Whither climate goal? Increasing reliance on coal 'likely to worsen' India's power crisis

By Shankar Sharma*  Recent news articles, How to shock-proof India’s power sector and Power minister points finger at states for worsening electricity crisis , have highlighted a few current problems for the ongoing power sector issues as in April 2022. However, there is a lot more to it than a few temporary solutions as indicated in the articles. It should also be emphasised that it is techno-economically impossible to completely shock-proof a highly complex and geographically wide-spread vast power network, such as the one in India, which is only getting more and more complex with the passage of each year due to some irrational policies/ practices in the sector. A business-as-usual (BAU) scenario, wherein more and more of conventional technology power plants, including coal power plants, will be added in the near future, will also necessitate the increased complexity in the integrated national grid, and as a result the instances of power shortage/ disruptions can only escalate for

Swami Vivekananda's views on caste and sexuality were 'painfully' regressive

By Bhaskar Sur* Swami Vivekananda now belongs more to the modern Hindu mythology than reality. It makes a daunting job to discover the real human being who knew unemployment, humiliation of losing a teaching job for 'incompetence', longed in vain for the bliss of a happy conjugal life only to suffer the consequent frustration.

Targeting mosques, churches: 'Roadmap' for 2025, RSS' centenary year?

416 years old Our Lady of Health Church, Sancoale, Goa  By Fr Cedric Prakash SJ*  Fascists use manipulative strategies aimed at whipping up sympathy and support from the majority community, to which they normally ‘belong’. They do so in a variety of insidious and subtle ways. In the past few months, they have gone overboard in their efforts to denigrate and demonize minorities in India, particularly Muslims and Christians. They have spewed hate and divisiveness through their venomous speeches; incited people to violence and have effectively used officialdom to further their vested interests. The results are there for all to see: greater polarisation of the majority community in a country which prided itself for its pluralism and diversity. Their meticulously planned agenda is in order to gain absolute power of the country in the 2024 national elections. More so it is also a roadmap towards 2025 when the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) will complete one hundred years of its existence.

Dalit scholar's comment on Lord Shiva 'harming' Muslims, 'damaging' secular cause

Shahid Siddiqui, Bobby Naqvi By Our Representative   Bobby Naqvi, who is with the "Gulf News", and is a well-known name among Muslim intellectuals, strongly objecting to the social media post of Prof Ratan Lal, has said that "a big reason for majoritarian hatred against Muslims is irresponsible remarks by people like Prof Ratan Lal of Delhi University." In a Facebook comment , which has attracted paise, among others, from journaliat-politician Shahid Siddiqui, Naqvi said, "Their commentary on Hinduism and icons of Hinduism (while angering religious and liberal Hindus alike) also triggers a massive backlash against Muslims. When the likes of Prof Lal criticize Hinduism on social media, Hindus bring Islam and Islamic practices and ask 'what about this' or 'what about that'." Naqvi insists, "Muslims (without their fault) and Islam get caught in this crossfire between the so called Hindu liberal class and the religious Hindus. And the ult

Govt of India 'compromising' on mandate to regulate gene technologies, protect nature

Counterview Desk  In a letter sent to the Union Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change (MoEFCC) and other related ministries and departments, the Coalition for a GM-Free India has raised "serious concern" over the guidelines notified for Genome Edited Organisms, in which major exemptions from regulations have been offered to certain categories of Genome Edited Organisms/Plants and products. A letter signed by Sridhar Radhakrishnan and Kapil Shah, co-convenors of the NGO network, addressed to Union Minister for Environment, Forest & Climate Change Bhupender Yadav, said, the Office Memorandum, dated May 17, 2022 of the Department of Biotechnology, Ministry of Science & Technology about Safety Assessment Guidelines, which follows the Office Memorandum dated March 30, 2022 of the MoEFCC, said, the move "essentially amounts to entry of risky GMOs through the backdoor. Text : Coalition for a  GM-Free India is a national volunteer-driven platform of hundre

Why there's strong likelihood India may resurrect its presence in Afghan capital

By Anand K Sahay* Since India evacuated its mission in Afghanistan once the Taliban re-took Kabul last August practically under American aegis, following what came to be called the Taliban’s Doha “negotiations” with the US, New Delhi is evidently doing a re-think. It is considered likely that an Indian representation will soon be restored in Kabul, even if this will be small and not at the level of ambassador. This is reflective of realistic thinking. Of course, there can be no question at present of according recognition to the Taliban regime. That is likely to happen when a broad consensus amongst the leading powers emerges. Currently the Taliban government is not helping its own cause of gaining world recognition- which will help it access overseas funds at a time when the country is in dire straits- by imposing severe restrictions on women and girls in serious violation of human rights. More basic is the issue that the Taliban regime is not considered r