On Friday, 5 November, leaders of All India Muslim Majlis-e-Mushawarat who carried a visit to Tripura following the week-long assaults on Muslims in the northeast state, wrote a letter to Biplab Kumar Deb, Tripura chief minister, seeking the state government’s immediate intervention in the protection of Muslims in the state who form about nine percent of its 3.7 million population. All India Muslim Majlis-e-Mushawarat is a federation of various Muslim organisations in India.
Read the letter:
Biplab Kumar Deb
Chief Minister of Tripura
This is in continuation to our letter dated 30/10/2021, sent to you on the eve of our visit to the anti-Muslim violence-affected areas of Tripura last month. There we were expecting a meeting with you as requested in our letter. We pursued with your PS and press secretary but our all efforts went in vain.
A joint delegation comprising senior representatives of four major national Muslim organisations of repute led by All India Muslim Majlis a Mushawarat (AIMMM), considered to be an apex body of Indian Muslims, visited the affected areas of the state from 31 October to 20 November 2021 and was joined by the representatives of Jamaat e Islami Hind (JIH), Markazi Jamiat Ahle Hadees Hind (JAH), All India Milli Council (AIMC) and the state president of Students Islamic Organisation (SIO).
During its visit, the delegation members met the victims of the violence to understand the reasons behind the violence and the response of the law enforcement agencies to contain the said violence and the steps police had taken to uphold the rule of the law besides understanding the steps taken by the state administration to provide relief to the victims.
We are at pains to share that every violence-effected area which we visited to take stock of the situation, has similar stories of fear and terror because of the intimidation by the local police beside the terror acts of the goons of VHP and Bajrang Dal and stories of not only lack of response by the security apparatus to contain the violence but also the open connivance of the state police with the culprits which resulted in the arson and looting of eight Muslim shops in Panisagar, North Tripura where the police allowed a Vishwa Hindu Parishad procession of more than five thousand people for which there was no police permission and the participants had indulged in arson and looting of the shops owned by Muslims and there are evidential proofs in form of video recordings that they raised provocative slogans against Islam and it’s Holy Prophet Muhammad (May peace be upon him) also.
We have received reports that a total of 16 mosques were attacked in various parts of Tripura including two in the state capital Agartala, of which four were totally burnt down and even copies of the Holy Quran were not spared and they too were consigned to the flames in the burnt down and destroyed mosques. Also, it’s shocking that the police did not arrest the organisers of the provocative procession which had indulged in arson, looting, and provocation besides indulging in other unlawful activities in Panisagar.
Unfortunately, we have also come to know that the Tripura police has not only failed to thwart designs of miscreants but has also not taken adequate steps to arrest the culprits of the violence and is acting in an arbitrary manner to deny the large scale violence and also indulging in acts of intimidations by issuing notice to the members of the fact-finding teams which had corroborated the data of the anti-Muslim violence.
The local Police did not spare even young journalist Mr. Masihuzzaman Ansari, member of New Delhi’s Press Club of India, who had gone to Tripura to file a story of the violence in a prestigious news portal “India Tomorrow” and was taken to Police station in Agartala. He was allowed to leave after 2 hours after the report about his detention went public. It’s shocking that Tripura Police had issued notices with a threat to invoke draconian UAPA against two members of fact-finding teams namely Mr. Ansar Indori Advocate — Secretary National Confederation of Human Rights Organisation and Advocate Mukesh of People’s Union of Civil Liberties for compiling a factual report of the state anti-Muslim violence.
It’s also shocking that the amount of compensation given by the administration to the shop owners whose small businesses were targeted, looted, and burnt is meager in terms as it is around 6 percent of the total cost of the losses victims had suffered.
You would agree that Tripura’s violence has globally maligned the image of our beloved country and had sent a message that the state administration was in connivance of the perpetrators of violence therein.
The silver lining of the whole events of anti-Muslim Tripura violence is the role of the common citizens of Tripura who have not participated in the unlawful activities of the goons of VHP and Bajrang Dal and had maintained peace and amity. It is also noteworthy that the Muslim community in spite of being the target of the perpetrators of violence had not reacted to any of the provocations and had maintained peace and tranquility.
We earnestly request you to advise the law enforcement agencies to maintain complete impartiality, immediately stop intimidating the members of fact-finding teams, and order a judicial inquiry of the violence with a mandate of probing role of Tripura police too, which may thwart the future agenda of those who had been at the forefront in the Tripura violence. You would agree that it is a paramount duty of the state administration to work for communal amity and justice to all irrespective of religious identities.
With best wishes
Navaid Hamid, President, All India Muslim Majlis-e-Mushawarat
Er. Moham ad Saleem, vice president, Jamaat-e-Islami Hind
Dr. Mohammad Shees Taimi, secretary, Markazi Jamiat Ahle Hadeeth Hind
Shams Tabrez Qasmi, representative, All India Milli Council