BSP MP Danish Ali, Jamia Coordination Committee (JCC), rights activists, and students of Jamia Millia Islamia have demanded that the president of the Alumni Association of Jamia Millia Islamia (AAJMI) who has been arrested under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act Delhi violence be released.
Shifa-Ur-Rehman, the president of AAJMI and member of JCC has been arrested on Sunday by the Delhi Police Special Cell over his alleged involvement in the North East Delhi violence.
“Above named accused i.e, Shifa-Ur-Rehman, who is presently President of AAJMI (Alumni Association of Jamia Millia Islamia) is also found actively involved behind the conspiracy hatched in setting up anti- CAA/NPR/NRC protests at various sites in Delhi, giving hatred speeches that led to the riots in the month of February 2020 at various protest site i.e, Jamia, Shaheen Bagh, Seelampur, Khureji, Inderlok, and Hauz Rani. Accused Shifa-Ur-Rehman along with AAJMI members namely Areeb and Badre Alam and other members of JCC, visited various protest sites in Delhi to coordinate the protest. From the interrogation of witnesses, it is revealed that accused Shifa-Ur-Rehman received funds from the members of ALUMNI of Jamia Millia Islamia based in the Middle East countries and he was coordinating the protest sites mentioned above,” the remand report reads.
Shifa-Ur-Rehman was remanded to police custody by a Delhi court for 10 days for further investigation in the case.
The Delhi Police also booked AAP councilor Tahir Hussain, former municipal councilor from the Congress Ishrat Jahan, Jamia Millia Islamia student leaders Meeran Haider, Safoora Zargar, and former Jawaharlal Nehru University student leader Umar Khalid under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, or UAPA, in a case related to Delhi violence.
It was after the attacks against peaceful protests against the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), the Hindu mobs conducted anti-Muslim pogrom in North East Delhi at the end of February. The Delhi Police were accused of either inaction or complicity in some instances of violence against Muslims and their neighbourhoods. The pogrom is widely acknowledged to have been sparked by incendiary comments made by Kapil Mishra, a BJP leader, about Muslims peacefully protesting against ‘anti-Muslim and unconstitutional’ citizenship law. Video evidence and witness accounts pointed to police allowing Hindu mobs to roam the streets freely to target the Muslim community.
“After Safoora Zargar and Meeran Haider, now AAJMI president Shifa-Ur-Rehman has been arrested. The police are specifically targeting Jamia Millia. At a time like this, we request the masses to stand with us and lend us support,” Ladeeda Farzana, a student leader at Jamia Millia Islamia tweeted.
“What is their crime? That they protested against CAA? Protests are an integral part of real democracy,” asks columnist Irena Akbar in Twitter.
UAPA target Muslims; Parliamentarians against police action
“Arresting Shifaur Rehman and others who are at the forefront of protests against CAA and NRC is an attempt to punish Jamiates who showed the way by leading a peaceful movement. In Parliament, I had warned the country that UAPA will target innocents,” BSP leader and a Member of Lok Sabha, Kunwar Danish Ali took to twitter to protest the arrest.
“It seems that Delhi Police has implicated Jamia students and JMI alumni just to teach them a lesson for sharing the video clip of the attack inside the library that exposed the barbaric action of the police. I raised the same in parliament,” Danish Ali who is also an alumnus of Jamia Millia Islamia added.
“I had spoken against UAPA in 2012 when Manmohan Singh was PM, I spoke against it in 2019. UAPA does not target criminals, it is meant to imprison any Muslim with a voice, any Dalit with a mind & any Adivasi with a heart,” AIMIM chief and Hyderabad MP Asaduddin Owaisi said in a virtual briefing on Friday.
His comments came after Delhi police charged draconian UAPA against Muslim student activists over Delhi violence.
“While we collectively fight coronavirus special cell of Delhi Police is busy picking up students and young activists on a fictitious pretext. They too know that such cooked charges shall not stand the scrutiny by the court but yes some digression indeed!!,” earlier RJD MP Manoj Jha also said in a tweet.