India’s Supreme Court Ignored Crucial Evidence Detailing Modi’s Complicity In Pogrom Of Muslims
The Indian American Muslim Council (IAMC) stands in solidarity with the demand of Zakia Jafri, wife of 2002 Gujarat riot victim and former member of Indian Parliament Ehsan Jafri, to reopen investigation against the then Gujarat Chief Minister and current Indian Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, for his complicity in one of the deadliest anti-Muslim riots in the country in which 2,000 people were killed.
On Tuesday, Zakia’s lawyers told the Supreme Court that a special investigation team (SIT) had ignored crucial evidence to give a clean chit to Modi including the testimony of witnesses such as the then senior police officer Sanjeev Bhatt, who had accused Modi of directing the police to let Hindus “vent their anger.”
The lawyers said about 23,000 pages of documents had been placed in support of the allegations before the SIT, but it had ignored them.
Ehsan Jafri was one of 68 people who was dismembered and burnt alive by Hindu extremists as they hid in his home in a residential building on February 28, 2002. Under Modi’s watch, Hindu mobs linked to the Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh (RSS), the ideological mentor of Mr. Modi’s BJP, carried out days’ long killings, rape and arson agaisnt Muslim community. Hundreds of women were subjected to brutal sexual violence.
USCIRF Chair Nadine Maenza Says Indian Officials, Hindu Extremists Spreading Hate Against Minorities Through Social Media
The IAMC applauds the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) chair Nadine Maenza for strongly condemning the spate of attacks on minorities, the use of social media by state and non-state actors to spread hate, the discriminatory Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and the jailing of activists and protesters in India.
In an interview with journalist Raqib Hameed Naik of Al Jazeera, Chair Maenza expressed great concerns over the Hindu nationalist policies of the Modi government and its crackdown on civil society.
Chair Maenza called on the White House and US State Department to continue to raise religious freedom concerns in the US-India bilateral relationship and also urged US Congress to highlight concerns through hearings, briefings, letters and Congressional delegations.
Earlier this year, the USCIRF in its annual report recommended the State Department to place India on the countries of particular concern (CPC) list for the second consecutive year, based on the sharp escalation in violations of human rights and religious freedom across the country.
Hindu Extremist Militia Forces Muslim Comedian to Cancel Shows
IAMC strongly condemns the Maharashtra police inaction against Hindu extremist group Bajrang Dal for threatening the venue hall owners in Mumbai who were hosting two shows featuring stand-up comedian Munawar Faruqui.
Bajrang Dal, an affiliate of RSS, which was categorized as a “religious militant organization” by the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), told the owners that “they will burn the place” and threatened their staff with physical violence. The threats and mounting online hate campaign by the Hindu rightwing ecosystem prompted Faruqui to cancel all his shows.
Earlier this year, Faruqui was arrested by police in Madhya Pradesh state after a BJP leader filed a false complaint accusing him of cracking jokes on Hindu Gods. He was incarcerated for a month, along with four other comics, before the Supreme Court granted him bail.