Muslim opposition leader Azam Khan convicted on bogus charges of hate speech
In an attempt to intimidate the Muslims in Uttar Pradesh state and deter its leaders from speaking against the policies of the state’s Hindu supremacist government, a court on Thursday sentenced a Muslim politician to three-year jail on bogus charges of “hate speech.”
Opposition leader Azam Khan was convicted in a 2019 case filed over his comments against Hindu extremist Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath.
Khan is currently out on interim bail after being imprisoned in another case.
Khan has faced nearly 90 cases against him since Adityanath came to power in 2017. Uttar Pradesh, India’s most populous state, has emerged as one of the most Islamophobic administrations in India.
Three Muslim activists arrested under draconian law for launching museum in Assam
Three Muslim activists were detained days after they inaugurated a museum displaying the heritage of Bengal-origin Muslims who settled in the modern-day Assam state in the late 1800s. The museum was sealed by government officials immediately after its inauguration.
The detainees are M. Mohar Ali and Abul Baten Sheikh, president and general secretary, respectively, of a local Muslim political outfit, and Tanu Dhadhumia, a college professor.
They have been booked under the draconian Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act.
The Assam police have made bogus claims of their alleged association with “terror outfits.”
Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma, infamous for his hateful anti-Muslim remarks, had said that the police will probe the source of funding for the museum. Sarma is a member of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), which pushes anti-Muslim policies seeking the creation of a Hindu state.
Other BJP leaders in Assam have also demanded that the Miya museum — so-called because Assamese Muslims call themselves Miya — be shut down immediately.
Hindu supremacists in the region have been agitating for decades to deport Bengali-origin Muslims. They refuse to recognize millions of Bengali-origin communities as Indian citizens.
Main accused in journalist Gauri Lankesh’s murder denied bail
The Karnataka High Court rejected a bail plea by a key accused in journalist Gauri Lankesh’s murder case.
Hrishikesh Devadikar, one of the masterminds in the killing of the prominent journalist outside her home on September 5, 2017, had approached the Karnataka High Court seeking bail.
Devadikar was arrested in 2020. He is linked to the Hindutva militant group, Sanatan Sanstha, and its affiliate, the Hindu Janajagruti Samiti (HJS). The group is alleged to have carried out the killings of a ”rationalist” from Maharashtra, Narendra Dabholkar, in 2013, leftist thinker Govind Pansare in 2015 and a Kannada scholar M. M. Kalburgi in 2015.