Skip to main content

UP violence: Modus operandi is to make victims the accused, seize property

By Sandeep Pandey*, Anandi Pandey** 
At New Delhi's Jamia Millia University if one visits the library it may appear as if a pitched battle was fought here. Almost all glasses have been broken by tear gas shells or stun grenades and furniture has been vandalised. And this was in response to some peaceful protests outside the library.
Although protests against Citizenship Amendment Act and the National Register of Citizens have been staged by students in various institutions, including IITs and IIMs, the police cracked down on institutions with Muslim majority students like Jamila Millia University, Aligarh Muslim University, Nadwa College and Integral University, the last two in Lucknow. Students have been brutally beaten.
Minazuddin lost one eye, both hands of Mustafa are fractured and Shayan has both legs fractured. 26 people have been arrested from AMU campus out of a total of 52 in Aligarh so far. But there are more than 1000 unnamed people in two FIRs each.
Four students of Nadwa College are in jail with their bail denied by the lower court. Ahmad Raza Khan, a student of Khawaja Moinuddin Chisti Urdu, Arabi, Farsi University in Lucknow has been rusticated by the Vice Chancellor for having sent a message to his fellow students for participating in a protest against CAA-NRC.
All the 17 deaths that have taken place in Uttar Pradesh due to bullet injuries during the recent violence are Muslim youth in 20s and 30s and mostly from poor families. Strangely, the police has not taken responsibility for any except one in Bijnor, when there is no question of groups of people having clashed with each other. It was a protest against the government. People were on one side and police on the other.
In Lucknow FIR no. 600 registered at Hazratganj Police Station on 20 December names 39 people as accused of whom 36 are Muslims. Among the arrested are Advocate Mohammad Shoaib who was under house arrest all along December 19, when most violence took place in Lucknow, and he is being accused of provoking violence. A battery rickshaw operator Mohammad Wakeel was killed by a bullet injury. People with bullet injuries are not coming out in open for fear of retributive action by police.
In Muzaffarnagar there was protest against CAA-NRC organised on December 20 and when people were returning to their homes around 3-4 pm a mob comprising of police and members of Hindutva brigade went on rampage and vandalised Muslim houses like those of Hamid Hasan, Intezar, Farooq in Sarwat and Naseem Ahmed, Ishtkhar in Khalapar and attacked Madarsa hostels.
Some minors are still in jail. FIR nos. 684 registered at PS Civil Lines and 1,161 registered at PS Kotwali Nagar on December 21 against 107 and 151, respectively, contain named Muslims and unnamed 2,500-3,000 people in both. Twenty-one years old clothes vendor Noor Mohammad was killed by a bullet shot at his forehead most likely by police.
Abdul Kareem Mosque in Darjiyon Wali Gali was also vandalised. 13.5 years old Mohammad Ahmed, student of class IX at Himalayan Public School, and his elder sister Rukayya, who was about to get married, received injuries in leg and head, respectively, inflicted by police lathis. Their house was attacked by about hundred policemen. So far no FIR has been registered by any of the victims or their family members. Victims and social activists are in a state of shock.
In Meerut there was no protest organised but people returning after Namaz in the afternoon on 20 December were attacked by police unprovoked first with lathis and then by opening firearms when there were stones thrown by people in response and 17 people received bullet injuries.
Officially five, and additionally one more, deaths have taken place. Among the dead were Aleem, 24 years old, a roti maker at a dhaba, Mohammad Asif, 20 years old, who used to ply battery rickshaw and Mohammad Mohsin, 30 years old, a scrap dealer, again most likely shot by police, all belonging to lower economic strata of society.
Aleem was shot at in temple and Asif and Mohsin in their chests. Again no FIRs have been registered by family members of the deceased as the people are afraid that the administration may attach their property as it considers all the dead as rioters. For example, Md. Asif had a Delhi identity card as his entire family had moved to Delhi for livelihood and returned three years back. He is being accused by police of having brought 20-25 rioters from Delhi to incite violence in Meerut.
Atmosphere is reminiscent of freedom movement: Rulers are trying to divide people on communal lines, the common Muslims and Hindus are together on street
The pattern is clear. It is the Muslims who have been attacked during vandalism, arson, looting or police firing and it is they against whom FIRs are also being registered. The modus operandi is to make victims the accused. The state government in UP has also declared that it'll recover the cost of damage to public property from rioters.
So, the victims who have FIRs against them also face the danger of their property being seized by the local administration. The police and administration went into overdrive after a late night meeting of senior officials with the Chief Minister on December 19 night.
Since the Bhartiya Janata Party has come to power at the centre a clear policy targetting the Muslims can be delineated. Act to ban illegal triple talaq has criminalised a civil matter without talking about abandonment of women by men practising other faiths. 
Abrogation of Articles 370 and 35A related to Jammu and Kashmir, while at the same time continuing dialogue with National Socialist Council of Nagaland for partial autonomy to Nagaland, was an example of humiliating a Muslim majority state.
The judgement in favour of Ram temple by the Supreme Court even though all evidences pointed to the contrary was a stamp of approval on majoritarian politics even by the judiciary. However, the CAA and NRC, even though clearly targetting the Muslims again, have touched some sensitive nerve of society where people across faith, gender, caste, class and region have come together to oppose the sinister move of the government. 
In an atmosphere reminiscent of freedom movement, while the rulers are trying their best to divide people on communal lines, the common Muslims and Hindus are together on street in this struggle against a repressive government.
People everywhere, south and north, are protesting against CAA. Some people are also making a conjecture that it is 2002 of UP. It remains to be seen whether the ongoing national movement will liberate the country from repressive forces or the country will recede further into a communalized and polarized society.
---
*Social-political activist; **second year BA student at Ashoka University. Contacts: ashaashram@yahoo.com, anandipandey99@gmail.com

Comments

TRENDING

Mystery around Gujarat PSU 'transfer' of Rs 250 crore to Canadian firm Karnalyte

By AK Luke, IAS (Retd)*
While returning from a Board meeting of the Oil India Limited (OIL) in Ahmedabad some time in 2012, two officers of the Gujarat State Fertilizers and Chemicals Ltd (GSFC), Nanavaty and Patel,  saw me off at the airport. They said they were proceeding to Canada in connection with a project GSFC had entered into with a company there. As we were running late, I hastily wished them the best.

J&K continues to be haunted, as parts of India 'degenerate' into quasi-Kashmir situation

By Rajendran Narayanan*, Sandeep Pandey**
“Jab har saans mein bandook dikhe toh baccha kaise bekhauf rahe?” (How can a child be fearless when she sees a gun in every breath?) remarked Anwar, a gardener from Srinagar, when asked about the situation in Kashmir. On November 30, 2019, a walk through an iron gate in a quiet neighbourhood of Srinagar took us inside a public school. It was 11 am when typically every school is abuzz with activity. Not here though.

Savarkar in Ahmedabad 'declared' two-nation theory in 1937, Jinnah followed 3 years later

By Our Representative
One of the top freedom fighters whom BJP and Prime Minister Narendra Modi revere the most, Vinayak Damodar Savarkar, was also a great supporter of the two nation theory for India, one for Hindus another for Muslims, claims a new expose on the man who is also known to be the original proponent of the concept of Hindutva.

Indians have made 119 nations their ‘karma bhumi’: US-based Hindu NGO tells Rupani

Counterview Desk
In a stinging letter to Gujarat chief minister Vijay Rupani, the US-based Hindus for Human Rights (HfHR), referring to the report citing his justification for the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) – that “while Muslims can choose any one of the 150 Islamic countries in the world (for residence), India is the only country for Hindus" – has said, he should remember, Hindus have made several countries, including USA, their home.

Dalits rights meet planned on how citizenship law 'negates' Ambedkar's equality focus

By Our Representative
A Dalit rights meet has been planned at the Dalit Shakti Kendra (DSK), Sanand, Ahmedabad district, to discuss implications of the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), passed by Parliament on December 10-11, for Dalits, Adivasis and other marginalized sections. Announcing the decision, DSK director Martin Macwan said, the meet would take place on December 25, 2019, at 11.00 am, to commemorate the anniversary of burning of copies of Manusmriti by Dr BR Ambedkar.

What about religious persecution of Dalits, Adivasis, asks anti-CAA meet off Ahmedabad

By Rajiv Shah
A well-attended Dalit rights meet under the banner “14 Pe Charcha” (discussion on Article 14 of the Indian Constitution), alluding to Prime Minister Narendra Modi well-known campaign phrase of the 2014 Parliamentary elections, “chai pe charcha” (discussion over cup of tea), organized off Ahmedabad, has resolved on Wednesday to hold a 14 kilometres-long rally on April 14 to oppose the controversial Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), enacted on December 10-11.

Upendra Baxi on foolish excellence, Indian judges and Consitutional cockroaches

By Rajiv Shah
In a controversial assertion, top legal expert Upendra Baxi has sought to question India's Constitution makers for neglecting human rights and social justice. Addressing an elite audience in Ahmedabad, Prof Baxi said, the constitutional idea of India enunciated by the Constituent Assembly tried to resolve four key conflicting concepts: governance, development, rights and justice.

Tata Mundra's possible closure? Power ministry's 'pressure tactic' on consumer states

By Bharat Patel*
Tata power has announced to the Union Ministry of Power that Tata Power may be forced to stop operating  its imported coal-based Mundra Ultra-Mega Power Project (UMPP) after February, 2020. It is not only unfortunate but also criminal that irreversible damage has been caused to the fragile ecosystem of Mundra coast for a project that will have a running life of only seven years.

Population control? 10% Indian couples want to delay next pregnancy, but fail

Counterview Desk
Shireen Jejeebhoy, director at Aksha Centre for Equity and Wellbeing, previously senior associate at the Population Council, India, argues that the debate on the country's population was fuelled by Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Independence Day address to the nation, where he drew attention to “concern” about the challenges posed by this ‘exploding’ population growth, needs to centre around the promotion of rights and education, instead of the language of explosion and the threat of coercion that this term implies.