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Indian Muslim

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    By Saiyed Danish,,

    Muzaffarnagar: If the pain and traumatic experience of Muzaffarnagar riot-victims is not enough to beat the daylight out of their confidence in the idea of justice, the news published in a local newspaper almost a week ago brazenly attempted to vilify the riots’ victims, stooping to the lowest levels of reportage.

    On January 8, 2014 the Meerut edition of Dainik Jagran came out with a story through which it wrongly tried to establish that two riot-hit men brothers Rojuddin and Salim, sons of Hakimuddin were missing from the Jogia Kheda and Loi camps respectively which swelled Delhi police’s suspicion about the possibility of their involvement in the Pakistan based terrorist organization Lashkar e Taiba’s attempt to radicalise the riot victims.


    According to Delhi police claims, the two terror suspects arrested earlier from Meerut had confessed that they were sent to radicalise angered youths in the camp and told that it was still happening there.

    “Delhi police quickly reached Muzaffarnagar camps at Loi and enquired about the two men, Rojuddin and Salim there. They learnt that both stayed at Loi camp during the riots but moved to Jogia Kheda after some days. But where did they go from Jogia Kheda is not known,” reads a paragraph on the news of the two absconding men, in the Hindi daily.

    The story was later reported in Hindi daily Hindustan as well. However, when TCN reached the village to assess the situation on the ground, the truth turned out to completely different from what was made to appear.

    Both Salim and Rojuddin are very much at their respective camps. Salim is still very living with his wife and children at Loi. (The original camp was forcibly removed by the government, but those who had no other alternative have set up several small camps nearby. One such camp is near a pond in Loi.) Rojuddin, on the other hand lives in Jogia Kheda with his family.

    “I and my brothers are already riot-victims. We are hit by every adverse situations life can offer us. I don’t even know how to read. It was only when somebody at Jogia Kheda told me that news published in a paper has rendered me missing, that I came to know of this,” Rojuddin told TCN, adding that they have “nothing to do with instigating anyone.”

    Sharing his travails, he added, “On September 7, we kept receiving phones after phones after the Kawal incident happened. On September 8, the village chief Harpal came to us and begged us not to go to other villages as it would bring bad name to him and the village. We believed him and stayed back. But he and Tham Singh had already planned to kill us all and when the attack happened, we ran for our lives watching them looting and burning our homes.”

    Salim (55) looks equally astonished. “I am living at Loi with my wife and children. I had no knowledge of such news. All I know is that I never went missing. We left our homes in utter sadness as the events of the riots unfolded. They looted whatever valuable items were there including some jewelry we had bought with so much difficulties. I still work as labourer nearby and leave the camp early in order to work more. We are psychologically hit and have become insomniacs,” he said.

    Rojuddin’s elder son goes to work daily. His two sons have been enrolled in a local school of Jogia Kheda where he hopes to earn enough so that he could continue their education. Almost three weeks ago, Rojuddin’s eldest son Imtiaj’s wife gave birth to a child in a camp in the madrasa without proper medical facilities as U.P. government has not yet provided any help whatsoever to the riot victims languishing in Jogia Kheda madrasa and various camps of Muzaffarnagar.

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    By IANS,

    New Delhi : The Supreme Court Friday issued notice to the Uttar Pradesh government on a petition alleging police inaction over seven rapes during the Muzaffarnagar riots.

    An apex court bench headed by Chief Justice P. Sathasivam issued the notice after counsel Kamini Jaiswal said police had registered six cases following the rapes but arrested no one.

    Jaiswal told the court that the rape victims were not properly examined after the September communal violence that left over 60 people dead.

    In one rape case, police were yet to register a FIR, she said. The notice is returnable in four weeks.

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    By IANS,

    New York : Authorities in Uttar Pradesh should immediately stop evicting people from camps after they fled their homes following communal violence in September, Human Rights Watch said Friday.

    The authorities should also conclude their investigations into riot-related crimes including alleged sexual violence, and initiate appropriate prosecutions, it said.

    A Human Rights Watch statement urged the central government to ensure that the Uttar Pradesh authorities provided aid to the displaced and their safe return or resettlement.

    India should also enact a strong law to prevent and respond to communal violence in consultation with rights experts, and in compliance with well-established international human rights principles, it said.

    The state government forcibly closed camps housing thousands displaced four months ago in rioting between Hindus and Muslims in Muzaffarnagar and surrounding districts that left more than 60 dead, the statement said.

    Instead of displacing these people again, the Uttar Pradesh government should provide needed relief and ensure the safe and voluntary return or resettlement for all those displaced.

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    By IANS,

    New Delhi : The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) Friday described the Congress as the "most communal party" in India.

    "The party that burnt alive 10,000 Sikhs ... and which worked with the Muslim League that divided India is calling us communal and divisive," party spokesman Prakash Javadekar said.

    "The Congress is the most communal party in India," he said.

    Javadekar's remarks came after Congress president Sonia Gandhi earlier in the day attacked the BJP's "divisive" ideology and said this posed the "biggest threat" for the country.

    The BJP leader said: "They are trying to create an atmosphere of fear in the minority communities but they will not succeed."

    The BJP also responded to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's statement that the opposition was making promises which cannot be fulfilled.

    "We have not yet made any promise. Our only promise is to provide good governance, which we will," said Javadekar.

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    By Quaid Najmi, IANS,

    Mumbai : He was credited with guiding the 1.20 million strong Dawoodi Bohra community out of the shadows -- and leading it on to the stage of modernity and prosperity.

    Syedna Mohammed Burhanuddin, the spiritual and temporal head of the Dawoodi Bohra Muslims who died in Mumbai Friday at age 102, provided a dynamic leadership to the largely business community which claims 100 percent literacy. He was known for insightful teachings.

    Revered as the 52nd Dai-al-Mutlaq (direct in the line of Prophet Mohammed) by the Bohras, the Syedna's love for environment, flora and fauna was legendary. He was also an Arabic scholar.

    Born in Surat in Gujarat, the Syedna was educated by his illustrious father, the late Syedna Taher Saifuddin.

    Syedna Taher Saifuddin personally trained the future Syedna and later affirmed him as his successor.

    At age 53, Syedna Mohammed Burhanuddin succeeded his father in 1965, heralding a new era for the Bohra community.

    Among his major contributions was to supervise and support the community's literacy efforts through 400 educational institutions in the world to impart religious, spiritual and secular education.

    The pride of place belongs to the over two centuries old Arabic university, Al-Jamiah Al-Saifiah Arabic Academy in Surat, and its new campus built by the Syedna in Karachi in 1983.

    Nurturing deep interest in secular studies, the Syedna always stressed on scientific and religious education. The result? The community produced thousands of professionals and academics.

    He exhorted his followers to conduct businesses combining mercantile and Islamic principles.

    With a view to foster healthy businesses, he institutionalized the Quranic concept of interest free loans.

    It heralded economic prosperity, enabling new entrepreneurs to venture into business while remaining faithful to age-old Islamic business tenets.

    A few years ago, the Syedna established the Burhaniyah Business Counselling Centre in Mumbai to provide modern business solutions.

    The Syedna strongly believed in giving back to nature through ecological conservation programmes and preventing environmental degradation.

    Scores of agriculture, horticulture, apiculture projects, greenhouses, terrace farming, plantations and afforestation projects were taken up under the auspices of the Burhani Foundation (India).

    In 2011, he threw his weight behind efforts to conserve the humble sparrow. A total of 52,000 feeding boxes for sparrows were distributed free.

    On the social front, the Syedna encouraged and institutionalized the tradition of mass marriages to curb wasteful expenditure on opulent marriages.

    In cities like Mumbai, he launched low finance housing schemes.

    At a macro-level, the Syedna took direct interest in the redevelopment of old, dilapidated buildings housing over 4,000 Dawoodi Bohra families in a small chunk of Bhendi Bazaar in south Mumbai.

    In June 2005, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh inaugurated the landmark Saifee Hospital here, set up by the community, which provides medicare to all sections of society.

    Another significant community initiative was to make the traditional Dawoodi Bohra cuisine, ranked among the richest by gourmets, more healthy, nutritious and low-calorie.

    He undertook the mammoth task of construction, renovation or restoration of several ancient and world heritage mosques, mausoleums and other buildings of historical significance worldwide.

    Chief among these were the 9th century mosque of Imam Hakim, Al-Jame Al-Anwar in Cairo, and ancient buildings in Yemen, Syria and India.

    A symbolic pride is the Raudat Tahera in Mumbai, the marble mausoleum of the Syedna's father where the entire Quran is inscribed on the inner white walls in letters of gold and precious stones.

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    By IANS,

    Mumbai : Syedna Mohammed Burhanuddin, spiritual head of the Dawoodi Bohra community, died following cardiac arrest here Friday, an official said. He was 102.

    The end came at Saifee Mahal, his residence in Malabar Hill in south Mumbai, his media associate Shaikh Qureish Raghib said Friday.

    He is succeeded by his second son, Syedna Mufaddal Saifuddin.

    Syedna Mohammed Burhanuddin had proclaimed Syedna Mufaddal Saifuddin as his successor at a Nass (investiture) in London in 2011.

    The new Syedna, who was on a visit to Sri Lanka, is expected to reach Mumbai and finalise the funeral and other arrangements.

    "The Syedna passed away this (Friday) morning and was to celebrate his 103rd birthday next month. The Dawoodi Bohra community will observe a 10-day mourning for the departed spiritual leader. As a mark of respect for the Syedna, all shops and businesses run by the community members shall remain closed for the next three days," Raghib said.

    As soon as the news spread through an official announcement, thousands of grieving Dawoodi Bohra community people rushed towards south Mumbai from different parts of the city and Thane.

    Apprehending an unmanageable situation arising at Malabar Hill which also houses the governor, chief minister, deputy chief minister, home minister, top businessmen, diplomats, the community appealed to all Dawoodi Bohras to go and pray in mosques in their respective localities.

    Syedna Mohammed Burhanuddin had succeeded his father, the late Syedna Taher Saifuddin in 1965 and led the community for nearly five decades.

    He will be buried beside his father at Raudat Tahera Mausoleum in Bhendi Bazar, south Mumbai. The funeral will likely be held Saturday.

    Prior to that, the new Syedna Mufaddal Saifuddin shall lead the 'Namaz-e-Janaza' (funeral procession) of his father at the Saifee Mosque nearby.

    A marble building, the Raudat Tahera Mausoleum is renowned for the entire Holy Quran inscribed in gold letters and bejewelled precious stones -- a landmark in the city.

    The new Syedna has worked closely with his father and received spiritual guidance from him.

    Highly respected in the community, Syedna Mufaddal Saifuddin travelled widely with the late Syedna, interacted with world political and religious leaders.

    Under his father's directions, he also worked on several national and international projects, including the restoration of the famous Fatemi Mosques in Egypt and other important edifices in the Arab world.

    The spokesperson said that thousands of community people from Mumbai, rest of India and around 40 countries worldwide are expected to converge for the funeral to pay last respects to the departed spiritual leader.

    Hundreds of weeping Dawoodi Bohra members, including women and children went to around three dozen community mosques in Mumbai to offer prayers.

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    By IANS,

    New Delhi : A court here Friday handed over the custody of Indian Mujahideen co-founder Yasin Bhatkal to Karnataka Police to quiz him in connection with the 2010 Chinnaswamy Stadium blast case.

    District Judge I.S. Mehta at Patiala House Court here allowed a plea by Karnataka Police seeking the custody of Bhatkal in connection with the stadium blast case.

    The court handed over Bhatkal's custody till Jan 28.

    Karnataka Police had requested the court for the custody of Bhatkal.

    Police told the district judge that a Bangalore court has issued production warrant for Bhatkal, asking for him to be presented before it on or before Jan 20.

    Bhatkal has been booked as an accused in the April 2010 blasts where two low-intensity bombs went off at the stadium, about an hour before the start of the Royal Challengers Bangalore-Mumbai Indians cricket match, injuring 15 people and delaying the match by an hour.

    Arrested by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) in August 2013, Bhatkal is accused of being involved in many terror attacks across the country.

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    By IANS,

    New Delhi : President Pranab Mukherjee Friday presented the country's highest Arabic Scholar's Award for the year 2013 to Prof. Zikrur Rahman, director, India Arab Cultural Centre and Centre for West Asian Studies, Jamia Millia Islamia.

    The award carries a Certificate of Honour, a citation and Rs.500,000. Rahman was among the eminent scholars of Sanskrit, Pali/Prakrit, Arabic and Persian and the Maharishi Badrayan Vyas Samman who were honoured by the president at a ceremony in the Durbar Hall of Rashtrapati Bhavan.

    Prof. Zikrur Rahman is a seasoned diplomat who has held a number of prestigious positions in the Indian embassies in the Arab World. He has also been India's ambassador to the Palestine.

    Considered as one of the best Arabic scholars in India, Prof. Zikrur Rahman has a number of academic achievements to his credit including works such as “Arab Diaspora in India”, “India Palestine Relations” and “Short Stories from India”. He has translated “The Indian Heritage” in Arabic written by Prof. Humayun Kabir and “The Argumentative Indian” by Nobel laureate Amartiya Sen.

    He has researched and edited the Arabic translation of “The Ramayana” which has been published by Abu Dhabi Culture Authority, UAE. He has supervised translation and publication of 24 contemporary Indian writers’ books in Arabic language which include famous works such as “Wings of Fire” by APJ Abdul Kalam, “The Idea of India” by Sunil Khilnani and “The Habitations of Modernity” by Dipesh Chakrabarty besides 12 books by Arab authors in Urdu and Hindi.

    He is currently authoring books on “Indian Scholars of Arabic Language and Literature” and “Indian Hajj Missions to Mecca". He has been delivering lectures on West Asia, North Africa and the Gulf issues regularly in national and international forums in Asian and European academic circles.

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    By IANS,

    New Delhi : The Supreme Court Friday issued notice to the central and Uttar Pradesh governments on a petition seeking setting up of a special investigating team of officers from outside the state to investigate seven rapes that took place during the Muzaffarnagar riots in September.

    A bench of Chief Justice P. Sathasivam, Justice Ranjana Prakash Desai and Justice Ranjan Gogoi issued notice after counsel Kamini Jaiswal urged the court to direct the setting up of an SIT of police officers from outside Uttar Pradesh and to be headed by a woman police officer to investigate the cases of gang rape, assault, arson, looting and other offences committed on the petitioners during the riots.

    The petition said such an investigation should be monitored by the apex court to ensure that no extraneous reasons interfere with or influence the probe.

    Appearing for the petitioners, counsel Kamini Jaiswal told the court that though police have registered six rape cases, no arrest has been made so far.

    Jaiswal told the court that the rape victims have not been properly examined medically.

    Seven rapes were reported during the riots - six from Fugana village and one from Lokha village. In one case, police were yet to register a first information report.

    The notice are returnable in four weeks.

    The petitioners also sought directions to Uttar Pradesh Police to immediately arrest the accused people named by the victim petitioners who were gang raped and assaulted during the riots.

    The petitioners said they were still being threatened, intimidated and pressurised.

    They also sought direction to Uttar Pradesh Police to lodge FIR on the basis of a written complaint by the petitioner No.7.

    Besides this, the petitioners also made seven prayers seeking various directions to the Uttar Pradesh government for the relocation of families outside the state and witness protection.

    All the seven petitioners are women from the minority community, who were allegedly gang raped and sexually assaulted during the communal violence in Muzaffarnagar and adjacent districts by men belonging to the other community.

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    By IANS,

    Jaipur : Curfew was partially relaxed Friday in a village in Rajasthan, four days after communal clashes claimed the lives of three people and left 11 others injured, police said.

    The clashes took place Jan 14 between members of two communities in Kotadi in Pratapgarh district, some 300 km from Jaipur.

    "We had clamped curfew in the village following the tension. For the first time after violence, we relaxed curfew for four hours today (Friday) afternoon," a police officer said.

    The clashes were triggered following a verbal spat between members of two communities.

    "They indulged in firing and arson. Three people were shot dead," the officer said.

    The tension spread to nearby villages and over a dozen houses were set ablaze by rioters. Six people have been arrested for their involvement in riots.

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    By IANS,

    Lucknow : Facing flak over its handling of the post-riot rehabilitation of riot survivors in Muzaffarnagar and Shamli, the Uttar Pradesh government Friday got a back-handed pat from the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC).

    The panel appreciated the rehabilitation exercise for 51,000 displaced persons, saying it was a daunting task and the Akhilesh Yadav government had done a "good job".

    However, NHRC officials also said there was room for improvement as the medical facilities and camps were inadequate. The state government also admitted that 47 people, including children, have died in the camps till Dec 3, 2013.

    The commission asked the state government to look into the cause of death of these people and give reasonable compensation to the bereaved families besides ensuring proper and adequate protection against the cold to the riot-affected staying in the camps.

    It directed the state government to pay compensation of Rs.1.25 crore in 25 cases, including police encounters and deaths in police custody.

    The panel heard 90 cases and said the Crime Branch-Criminal Investigation Department needed to considerably improve its investigation of encounters and custodial deaths.

    The commission explained to police officers that while criminals might be a menace to society, the rule of law must prevail.

    It recommended an amount of Rs.15,000 for a woman denied admission to a Bahraich government hospital and who delivered her baby by the roadside. The NHRC also interacted with some non-government organisations (NGOs) who complained the police was insensitive and biased against women.

    An NGO that gave shelter to a victim of sexual assault complained the accused attacked its office and forcibly took away two female workers. It added that despite the police being informed, no action was taken against the perpetrators.

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  • 01/18/14--00:22: The AAP Revolution
  • By Irfan Engineer,

    Aam Admi Party has aroused a lot of enthusiasm among the people of India after its spectacular debut in the Delhi elections. Though AAP could not get majority and was not even the single largest party, it was obliged to form its government. AAP was nudged by both – Congress as well as the BJP to form its Govt. in the National Capital Territory - Congress by extending unconditional support and BJP, by deciding to sit on opposition benches in spite of being the single largest party. Harsh Vardhan, BJP’s Chief Ministerial Candidate in his tweet challenged the AAP to form its Government. Both the parties were hoping that AAP would fail to fulfill its promises and AAP’s failure would be beneficial to expose during the 2014 Lok Sabha elections.
    In its manifesto, AAP had promised among other things that it would provide 700 litres of water to the residents of Delhi free and reduce the energy charges by 50%. BJP and Congress were hoping that AAP would fail to deliver on its promise and hence expose the party before the impending Lok Sabha elections. Nevertheless, AAP turned the challenge of forming the Government into its advantage and delivered on some of the promises. While deciding to form a minority govt. with the Congress supporting its minority govt from outside, AAP adopted some unusual methods by holding “referendum” through mohalla sabhas. The concept of mohalla sabhas was new to the electorate as well as other political parties. In the TV studio debates, the AAP spokespersons are proclaiming that while the traditional national parties like the Congress and the BJP are replacement to each other, AAP was an alternative. Arvind Kejriwal’s book titled Swaraj is selling like hot cakes and has aroused a lot of interests.

    Jamat-E-Islami and other small parties have declared its support to the AAP. Soon there was a rush in many metros and small towns to join the AAP. Some media reports stated that in matter of three days, three lakh persons have become members of AAP and Arvind Kejriwal, the AAP Chief Minister of Delhi has set a target of membership of ten million by 26th January. The AAP received wide coverage and news channels during prime time. Some notable personalities too have joined the AAP, including Mallika Sarabhai in Gujarat and industrialists like Meera Sanyal.

    Meanwhile, one witnesses a lot of incoherence, if not contradictions, in the AAP rank and file. Meera Sanyal has often been on TV studios and aired her views in favour of more rigorous and speedier less regulated inflow of foreign investments, less regulated market and removing fretters on capital and entrepreneurship. On the other hand, many activists who are opposed to liberalization and globalization too have joined the party. Kamal Mitra Chenoy, an accomplished academician and member of CPI, has joined the AAP. Mallika Sarabhai who contested against Narendra Modi who presided over the Gujarat carnage has joined the Party in Gujarat while Kumar Vishwas, one of prominent leaders of the AAP has praised Narendra Modi and is busy mobilizing voters in Amethi to defeat Rahul Gandhi. Mallika Sarabhai even publicly rebuked Kumar Vishwas for being sexist gay hater and for praising Modi. There is incoherence within the Party on account of mainly being a single issue on which the Party focuses – corruption. People following all kinds of ideologies and political programmes are against corruption and therefore Meera Sanyal as well as anti-globalization activists are attracted to the AAP, particularly with the success of the Party in Delhi. With the target of ten million members till 26th January, there is an aggressive recruitment drive throughout the country, including online and the verification process of those joining the AAP during an aggressive drive is going to be lax. While CM Kejriwal talks of simplicity, integrity and honesty, those joining the AAP may be ambitious seeking opportunities of being in various posts.

    Understanding the AAP ‘Revolution’:

    The quick popularity of the AAP is not difficult to understand. There was exposure of series of scams beginning from Commonwealth games, 2G spectrum, coal block allocation and the rest. Team Anna’s agitation supported by liberal coverage by media demanded Jan Lokpal as one off solution to all corruption gave a vent to popular frustration and anger. Team Anna’s strategy to fight corruption placed heavy reliance on the institution of Jan Lokpal with jurisdiction over the PM, the judiciary and lakhs of govt. employees including class IV and control over the CBI and the CVC. Team Anna, which included CM Kejriwal, demanded nearly unlimited powers for the Jan Lokpal and with little or no accountability. Arundhati Roy, the celebrated author, in one of her articles asked, would the common man and the elite now have to bribe one more institution in addition to the traditional authorities to continue their everyday affair.

    The media and people cared little whether the Jan Lokpal was the right and desired solution to the problem of corruption, what prompted them to support the agitation, including the opportunist opposition, was that the issue of corruption was being publicly debated and rebuked. While the BJP wanted to put the ruling Congress in the dock, Team Anna wanted to put all the politicians and institutions of democracy, including the Parliament and Judiciary in the dock. The agitation bordered on anarchism with all powerful Jan Lokpal as a solution to all problems of the people. The agitation was peppered by undercurrents of majoritarian nationalism and liberal use of symbol of Bharatmata. The middle class, with its usual abhorrence to politicians as “less intelligent” and “less educated” and even rural and backward thinking, enthusiastically supported the Team Anna agitation prompted by media. It is this backdrop that gave birth to the AAP – an offshoot of Team Anna. Origin of the AAP was in opposing all the democratic institutions without proposing any alternative and therefore sounded like anarchic in its solutions. However, with elections, it is going more towards being a system compliant Party from a system adverse Party.

    Mohalla Sabhas and Renunciation:

    The USP of the AAP has been basically twofold. One, Arvind Kejriwal and his teams simplicity, plebian background and renunciation of all privileges of office, like official residence, cars, security cover and the rest. Renunciation resonates with common people as they hope that those who renounce privileges of office are going to be non-corrupt. That need not be so. How far will all of them now in positions of authority and with opportunities to make quick bucks would be able to resist temptations in spite of maintaining their appearance as renouncers, remains to be seen. It is not only temptations that they will have to resist. They will have to resist coercive attempts of the land mafias, water mafias, and the rest. The second USP of the AAP is innovative ways in which they have utilized social media as a tool to continuously communicate with their constituencies in a way the traditional parties could not have imagined (to borrow Rahul Gandhi’s phrase). The way in which “referendum” on the issue – whether the AAP should form a minority government with external support from the Congress – impressed everybody. The AAP’s decision making organs are going to be not just party leaders or a small coterie, but the ordinary members of the party and the people in the mohalla sabhas.

    However, there are many issues of who would constitute the mohalla sabha? What would be their decision making process? Simple majority? Overwhelming majority? Or complete unanimity? What are the issues on which the mohalla sabhas would be entrusted to decide? There are many issues on which the mohalla sabhas could not be entrusted with decision making, particularly on the issues that are in conflict with the Constitutional morality of liberty, equality, fraternity and dignity of every individual. Can affirmative actions for dalits, adivasis and minorities be decided in mohalla sabhas? What if the Khap panchayats were to decide on section 377 of the IPC pertaining to the rights of sexual minorities? Or on liberties of women? However, it could be experimented if the mohalla sabhas should be called upon to deliberate how they would like to spend their funds for development of their local area. There could be a danger here too that those in position of hegemony over the mohalla sabhas could exclude the marginalized sections like the dalits, adivasis, minorities etc. It is for this reason that Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar had misgivings about Gnadhiji’s concept of gram swaraj. Autonomous gram swaraj could turn into instrument of oppression of the dalits and institutionalization of untouchability. Dr. Ambedkar therefore advocated strong centre, where the elite, informed of Constitutional morality of equality, could be relied upon to take on the caste oppression through Constitutional measures.
    The unique feat that the AAP achieved in Delhi was that through their door to door campaign on the issue of inflated energy bills, promise of free water upto 700 litres per person per day, promise to halt demolition of slums until alternative accommodation was provided, and on anti-corruption plank, it could mobilize the middle class as well as the slum dwellers of Delhi to vote for it!

    The AAP’s Strengths:

    The AAP holds the hope for the future as it has been mobilizing the citizens not on the basis of their caste, region, community, language, ethnicity or any other identity markers. It mobilizes citizens on the issue of transparency within the system; for participatory processes and anti-corruption. Since all sections of the society, except those in positions of authority and the elite, including industrial houses, want more participatory democracy, transparency and corruption free system, all sections have been joining the party despite the identities they profess. It mobilizes citizens as citizens and not as Hindus or Muslims or South Indians or North Indians! If the AAP were to succeed and continue on these lines, communal and caste based politics would become irrelevant. But there is capital IF. In this sense, the AAP is catch-all party. It promises to set up right systems for accountability of those in power. The free market advocates and anti-globalization activists – all can be members of the Party. Only the free market advocates within the Party would be worried that energy and water and indeed other services should not be subsidized.

    The social origin of the AAP has been its campaign for RTI and anti-corruption. The leadership of the Party is so far drawn from ordinary people and its professed political goals are policy seeking rather than office seeking or vote seeking.

    Problem areas:

    The biggest challenge that AAP faces in spite of its strengths is that it does not follow any ideology nor does it seem to have any professed political programme or direction. The Party is too nascent and has not yet deliberated on many political issues. The leaders are speaking in different voices on, e.g. presence of military in Kashmir. Prashant Bhushan has taken position stating that military should be withdrawn from civilian areas in Kashmir while others are disowning Prashant Bhushan’s stand. Similarly, on the issue of Kudankulam Nuclear plant and nuclear energy, different leaders are speaking in different voices. While Kumar Vishwas is praising Modi, others are strongly differing. Arvind Kejriwal is maintaining silence on some of the issues. People from varied ideological stream are infiltrating into the Party in absence of ideological or clear and declared political positions. The incoherence on varied issues can pose a challenge of alienating one section or the other once its positions on various issues are declared. In coherence can lead to indecisiveness on issues.

    The Party does not seem to have put in place strong structure in place. Sudden expansion will bring all kinds of elements in the party – the left wingers and the right wingers, the honest and the opportunists, notables like Meera Sanyal, Mallika Sarabhai and the ordinary grass root activists. How this plays out remains to be seen. But for now the AAP’s expansion is posing challenge to the BJP’s victory at the hustings. Kejriwal has demonstrated that leaders who renounce privileges are more popular. Modi in contrast uses considerable financial resources hopping in helicopters, constructing massive podiums and spending millions of rupees in technology and mobilization of people. Congress failure at hustings in the four states in which elections were held recently had boosted the morale of BJP workers however, with AAP dominating the media and expansion of AAP has the BJP now worried. Good enough justification for existence of AAP!

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    Ensure Aid, Safe Return or Resettlement, and Justice for Abuses

    By TCN News,

    New York : Indian authorities in the northern state of Uttar Pradesh should immediately stop evicting people from camps who fled communal violence in September 2013, Human Rights Watch said today. State authorities should conclude their investigations into riot-related crimes, including alleged sexual violence, and initiate appropriate prosecutions.

    The central government should ensure that the Uttar Pradesh state authorities provide aid to the displaced, and their safe return or resettlement, in accordance with international human rights and humanitarian law. India should also enact a strong law to prevent and respond to communal violence in the country in consultation with rights experts, and in compliance with well-established international human rights principles.

    The state government has forcibly closed camps housing thousands of people displaced four months ago by communal violence between Hindus and Muslims in Muzaffarnagar and surrounding districts that resulted in more than 60 deaths. Instead of displacing these people again, the Uttar Pradesh government should provide needed relief, and ensure the safe, voluntary return or resettlement for all those displaced, Human Rights Watch said.

    “The Uttar Pradesh government responded to reports of relief shortages and rising children’s death toll by evicting riot victims from camps,” said Meenakshi Ganguly, South Asia director at Human Rights Watch. “Instead of protecting those in need, it is using coercion to keep their plight hidden.”

    A September 7, 2013 communal altercation in Muzaffarnagar that left two Hindus and a Muslim dead was followed by inflammatory speeches by Hindu political leaders from the Jat community that encouraged attacks on Muslims. Three days of violence ensued between Hindus and Muslims in Muzaffarnagar, Shamli, Meerut, Baghpat, and Saharanpur districts until a curfew was imposed and the Indian army was deployed to restore law and order. People from more than 150 villages fled their homes and thousands remain displaced, fearful to return.

    In January 2014, Human Rights Watch visited six camps in Muzaffarnagar and Shamli districts and found that those displaced had received little assistance from the government. Religious charities and madrassas, along with civil society groups and local villagers, have taken the lead in providing aid, including shelter, food, and clothing.

    Residents of the camps told Human Rights Watch that the state had provided aid for less than a month and since November 2013 the authorities had been putting pressure on them to leave the camps.

    Reports of child deaths in camps

    In December 2013, the Indian Supreme Court expressed concern over reports of deaths of children in the camps and directed state authorities to immediately improve their relief services and report on the situation. A committee appointed by the Uttar Pradesh government found that 34 children at the relief camps had died since September.

    Authorities have sought to downplay the ongoing displacement of riot victims, Human Rights Watch said. The Uttar Pradesh government reported in December that out of the 58 camps opened in September, only four remained in Shamli and one in Muzaffarnagar districts – but ignored the displaced removed from the camps. It said that only around 5,000 people remained displaced, though local groups put this number at more than 27,000. In January 2014 the Muzaffarnagar authorities told Human Rights Watch that its remaining camp had closed and that all the displaced people had returned home except for those from the six villages designated as “riot-affected.” Mulayam Singh Yadav, chief of Uttar Pradesh’s ruling Samajwadi party – and father of the state’s chief minister – claimed that those still in camps were not riot victims but people conspiring with rival political parties against the state government.

    Human Rights Watch found that many displaced people, primarily Muslims, continued to live in camps or had moved inside nearby villages when they were evicted, in Shahpur, Loyi, Kandhla, Jogiya Kheda, and Jaula villages in Muzaffarnagar district and Malakpur in Shamli. In Shahpur, Jaula, and Malakpur, hundreds of tents were visible on government and private land. In other cases, the government had put pressure on the madrassas or religious organizations providing relief to the camps to shut them down. Instead, displaced people had merely moved into nearby Muslim dominant villages, living temporarily in people’s homes or pitching their tents on private land.

    The Uttar Pradesh state authorities should provide assistance and protection to those displaced by the riots in accordance with the United Nations Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement. The authorities should provide essential food and potable water, basic shelter and housing, appropriate clothing, and essential medical services and sanitation. Assistance should be provided without discrimination. The authorities have the primary duty and responsibility to establish conditions, as well as provide the means, that would allow displaced families to return voluntarily, in safety and with dignity, to their homes, or to resettle voluntarily in another part of the country. Special efforts should be made to ensure the full participation of the displaced in the planning and management of their return or resettlement.

    The Uttar Pradesh state government’s plan for rehabilitation of those displaced has largely comprised a one-time payment of INR 500,000 (US$8,123) to 1,800 families from nine villages. The government contends that residents of six villages in Muzaffarnagar and three in Shamli faced the most violence and do not want to return, so they are being compensated to move elsewhere. Numerous displaced people told Human Rights Watch that in order to receive compensation they had to sign an affidavit saying they will not return to their villages, live in a relief camp, or occupy government land.

    A local official defended the affidavits, telling Human Rights Watch: “They have given the affidavit voluntarily, what can we do? We didn’t force them to sign it. If they have already given to us in writing that they won’t return, how can they return to their villages?”

    State action missing

    The authorities have stated that any property owned by the displaced people in their former villages will remain the villagers’. But many displaced Muslims who spoke to Human Rights Watch expressed the fear that in their absence the Hindu residents in their villages would encroach upon their property and take over their land.

    “The Uttar Pradesh government has no real rehabilitation plan or safe return policy,” Ganguly said. “The authorities need to promptly step up and ensure that those displaced can, without discrimination, return home safely or have the means and ability to move elsewhere.”

    The state government’s special investigation into riot-related crimes should conclude promptly and appropriate prosecutions should be pursued, particularly in cases of sexual violence, Human Rights Watch said. Senior police officials reported that 533 riot-related cases have been registered, including six cases of sexual assault. About 300 arrests have been made so far, though none in sexual violence cases. Muzaffarnagar’s police chief, Hari Narayan Singh, told Human Rights Watch that investigations into allegations of gang rape and sexual assault were ongoing. Local activists expressed concern about the pace and effectiveness of the police investigations, calling them slow and alleging that the police are trying to distort evidence in a number of cases.

    Since the communal riots, state authorities have not taken adequate action to address tensions between the Hindu and Muslim communities or improve conditions so that the displaced population feels it is safe to return. On January 9, a state-level minister helped mediate a rare meeting between chiefs of Hindu and Muslim dominated villages that had suffered major displacement. Iqbal Khan, chief of Jogiya Kheda village who attended the meeting, told Human Rights Watch that that it was still not safe for the displaced people to return. “No one has been convicted yet of the crimes,” he said. “The people who attacked them still remain in the villages, so how can they feel safe on return?”

    While a number of residents in camps and some camp organizers told Human Rights Watch that some of the displaced who came from villages that had not witnessed any violence had returned home, the overwhelming sentiment among those remaining in camps was still of fear and refusal to return.

    “Displaced riot victims fear returning home because they don’t think the government can protect them if new communal violence erupts,” Ganguly said. “Only by prosecuting all those responsible for the violence can the government gain the trust of those anxious to return to their homes.”

    Testimony from internally displaced people and camp committee organizers in Muzaffarnagar

    “When we came here, the camp organizing committee gave us a tent on government land. We stayed at the camp for about three and a half months. We had to move out in the last week of December because the district authorities came and said ‘Wherever you want to go, go, but leave this place. This is government land.’ They added ‘We are telling you nicely. Move now or otherwise we will use force. You might get hurt.’ So we moved. Some of us received compensation so we bought land in the village.

    When the authorities asked us to move, it was really difficult. Where could we go? Then we asked some Dalits who owned huts in the village but were away to work in brick kilns if we could put our tent in their compound. They agreed, so until they return, we will stay here.

    Right now we aren’t certain when we will get possession of our new land, build our house, and move. We will never go back [to Phugana]. They will not leave us alive. They have not left a single thing in our homes. How will they leave us? We are scared even to visit our village.”
    · - Jaitoon, 65, from Phugana village in Muzaffarnagar. Living in Loyi village

    “For the last two months, police have been coming with the district authorities regularly and asking us to move our camp elsewhere saying we would get compensation. But we didn’t move because half the people had not received compensation. We had no faith. Then the village chief told us if we wanted compensation, we had to move. We had constant pressure from the police too. So then we had to move.

    It was not like we were taking over the land. We felt even more helpless when we had to move this time because at least until now we felt that these people from the Loyi village had helped us. But when they asked us to move our tents, we felt we had no one. The government was never ours, but now even the people who helped us earlier were turning us away. There wasn’t enough space for everyone to stay in the village so many people left.”

    · - Nafedeen, 50, from Phugana village. Living in a tent in Loyi village

    “Due to media attention on the camps, the authorities were embarrassed so they asked us to move people out of the camps. But we told them that first give compensation to the people, only then will they move.

    The authorities were threatening us with a court case saying you have taken over state-owned land, so we had to relent and move the people.

    When there was no media attention on the camps, the government didn’t bother about them. But when the media came, then they got worried and we had to move the people inside the village, either in tents on private land or inside people’s houses.

    Not one person wants to return to their village. But there are people who are displaced from villages not counted under the riot-affected village list. Those people are most in need today as they need alternative accommodation.

    The government says, ‘Wherever you go, just go from here.’”
    · - Abdul Jabbar, former village chief, Loyi

    “We were living in Loyi camp since September. Last month, we heard that those who received compensation should leave the camp, but the rest can stay. But suddenly, one morning when we woke up, we saw district officials, police, and bulldozers standing at the camp. We had to leave in a hurry and lost much of our food grains.

    From there we went to Neem Khedi along with several other families and put our tent there. We stayed there for a few days and then we were asked to move from there too. Again, the district officials and the police came and asked us to go. So then we came here to Jogiya Kheda and are living temporarily in people’s houses in the village. We have been ousted from one place after another.

    We want the government to give everyone compensation. We want justice. People who made us suffer so, attacked us, left us displaced, burned our homes, they should be arrested.”

    · - Midu, 65, from Phugana village. Displaced multiple times and currently living in Jogiya Kheda village

    “We will live here in Kandhla because it’s a Muslim village and we have every kind of support here. No one insults us here. No one can attack us here as they did in our former village. We cannot trust these Jats. They can do anything.

    The Jats don’t really want us to come back. They only came here to meet us because they want us to withdraw the FIRs [police complaints known as a First Information Report]. Some people who have returned to the village come and tell us that ‘Jats say that last time you got away but this time we wouldn’t let you get away.’ We don’t want to return. Our children are terrified.”

    · Mohameed Nafedeen, 38, from Naala village in Muzaffarnagar. Living in a tent in Kandhla village

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    By TCN News,

    New Delhi: Prof. Zikrur Rehman, Director of India Arab Cultural Centre and Centre for West Asian Studies, Jamia Millia Islamia has bagged India’s highest Arabic Scholar’s Award.

    In a ceremony to be held in the Durbar Hall of the Rashtrapati Bhawan today, i.e. January 17, 2014, the President of India, Mr. Pranab Mukherjee will honour Prof. Zikrur Rehman with the Country’s highest Arabic Scholar’s Award for the year 2013 which carries a Certificate of Honour, a Citation and five lakh rupees.

    Prof. Zikrur Rahman has a number of academic achievements to his credit which include works such as Arab Diaspora in India, India Palestine Relations and Short Stories from India. He has translated The Indian Heritage in Arabic, written by Prof. Humayun Kabir; The Argumentative Indian by Nobel laureate Amartya Sen.

    He has researched and edited the Arabic translation of The Ramayana which has been published by Abu Dhabi Culture Authority, UAE. He has supervised translation and publication of 24 contemporary Indian writers’ books in Arabic language which include famous works such as Wings of Fire by APJ Abdul Kalam, The Idea of India by Sunil Khilnani, The Habitations of Modernity by Dipesh Chakrabarty etc.

    He has delivered lectures on West Asia, North Africa and the Gulf regularly in the national and international forums in Asian and European academic circles. He has supervised a number of Research Projects on the Gulf Studies.

    In a press release, University fraternity congratulated Prof. Zikrur Rehman on getting this prestigious award, terming it a “matter of great pride and pleasure” for the whole University.

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    By Staff Reporter,

    Hyderabad: Majlis-e-Itehadul Muslimeen chief and Member of Parliament from Hyderabad Asaduddin Owaisi broke his silence for the first time on the Muslim moral policing incident, condemning it and cautioned Muslim community from blindly supporting police over action.

    Addressing a huge gathering of Jalsa Seerat un Nabi at Mela Maidan near Golconda fort Asaduddin Owaisi raised up the issue of Muslim moral policing by local Inspector Syed Nayeemuddin Jawed which had recently created national headlines.

    Asaduddin Owaisi adressing congregation at Golconda

    Golconda Inspector Jawed created a controversy when in a self-promotional video he was caught chasing down ‘Muslim couples’ and punishing them at Seven Tombs Park.

    Golconda station head Inspector claimed that those youngsters were indulging in indecent acts at Public Park. In the video which has got widely circulated over social media Inspector Jawed and plainclothes police men with Lathis in hand were seen manhandling adult males and forcing girls clad in Burqas to do sit ups on running camera and on even occasions allowed other passers-by to film in their mobile phones.
    Mr. Owaisi questioned the logic behind punishing girls in the camera and publishing it on Youtube, “Police will not act against street teasers, but will go in the parks to make girls do sit ups in front of cameras. How will you feel Mr. Inspector if your daughter gets punished in the same manner and gets published on YouTube,” MIM chief said.

    MIM chief offered a word of caution to many local Muslims who came out in support of incident. “I am telling this to whole community, Police doesn’t have any authority to punish girls on roads in public and upload it on Youtube. I fear if we today legitimize this kind of acts tomorrow police will shoot anybody then claim he was a terrorist,” he said.

    He went on to say, “Remember we should always condemn this kind of acts and never support it.”

    In his aggressive tune Mr. Owaisi went on to lambast Golconda inspector, adding “Aren’t there gambling parlours, illicit liquor production centres running in this area? Why don’t you act against them? Why? Is it because you are getting payments from them. Why don’t you act against rowdies and thieves, why? Isn’t it because they are your stooges.”

    Punishing youngsters publicly is not the solution, he warned. “Doesn’t humans commit mistakes, punishing them publicly will make them more stubborn,” he said.

    National Commission for Women has already demanded action against Inspector Jawed and has written two letters to the state DGP asking for action taken report, but state police is yet to give any reply to NCW. With the flip flop from the state police continuing NCW is expected to go after Inspector on its own.

    Meanwhile Inspector Jawed has received support from many Islamist organizations including Jamat-e-Islami for his acts. Stern comments from MIM chief has again heated up the debate on legitimacy of Inspector Jawed’s Muslim moral policing show.


    Police & Media colludes in ‘Muslim Moral policing’, inquiry ordered

    NCW demands actions against ‘Muslim moral police,’ Islamists stand in defense

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    By TCN News,

    Washington DC: Association of Indian Muslims of America (AIMA), a non-profit NGO of Indian Muslims who live in US, has come out in open support of the AAM Aadmi Party.

    “We enthusiastically share the views of AAP volunteers, and ask India's Muslim citizens and voters to support AAP with funds, volunteers and votes, as AAP prepares to participate in the upcoming parliamentary election,” Kaleem Kawaja, Executive Director of Association of Indian Muslims of America, said in a press statement.

    “Several of our members in US who hold Indian passports are planning to visit India at election time to campaign for AAP and to raise funds for them in India,” AIMA added.

    Even before the remarkable victory of AAP in the recent Delhi state elections, a significant number of middle class and educated Muslims in Delhi had enthusiastically responded to the call of this nascent party, to help it cleanse the political system and governance.

    Recently Jamat Islami Hind had also expressed willingness to extend support to AAP.

    “We are very optimistic that AAP will win a significant number of seats in the parliamentary election and thus force the other parties to change their tactics of using religion, caste, money-politics and vote-bank politics that are seriously harming the Indian nation. We are hopeful that in due course of time this positive change in India's polity will be of much help to the Muslims of India,” AIMA said.


    Muslims are slowly opening up to AAP, although confusions remain

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    By Staff Reporter,

    Guwahati: National Commission for Women (NCW) has decided to set up a North East Cell soon. A decision to this effect was taken in an interactive meeting of NCW with Chairperson of North East Region (NER) recently at Imphal. This meeting was organized by Manipur State Commission for Women in collaboration with NCW.

    Chairperson of NCW, Mamta Sharma stated that people of North East, particularly women, would be benefited from the Cell as they could directly contact it for to lodge their grievances.

    Chairpersons and Member Secretaries of different State Commissions like Meghalaya, Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland, Manipur etc. also presented their activities before NCW. Member Secretary Monidipa Borkotoki and Member, Bokul Ghosh of Assam State Commission for Women represented from the State.

    In addition, NCW also held a public hearing with the women traders of Ima Keithel (Mother Market) wherein their problems and issues were discussed during the interaction.

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  • 01/18/14--00:39: Roots of the Mappila Revolt
  • By Abubaker.A,

    The 20th Mappila Revolt can be traced to the Portuguese period. Anti-imperialist movement in Kerala started with the Portuguese occupying Kerala territories. A group of 2000 pilgrims, including women and children, were killed and the goods, ornaments and priceless articles were looted. The Arabs were the people who made Malabar a rich place. The Mappilas were highly respected by the rulers of Kerala, especially by the Zamorins of Calicut. Mappilas helped Zamorins to construct a prosperous kingdom and, in turn, Zamorins gave Mappilas all facilities to practise the faith without fear and outside interference.

    With Zamorins’ rejection of Portuguese involvement in the commercial field in Kerala, replacing Muslims, aroused hate and misbehaviour in the Portuguese leader, Vasco da Gama. Gama destroyed Muslim commercial settlements in Calicut and played tricks to alienate Muslims from Zamorins. The Zamorins’ Mappila army fought against Portuguese’s powerful army and inflicted heavy loss on them. Later, they reinforced the army with modern weapons. However, unable to subdue Zamorins’ navy of Mappilas and Nairs headed by Kunhali Marikkar, the Portuguese treacherously trapped Marikkar IV with accusation of violating law of the land. The Zamorins were compelled to believe the charges made against Marikkar IV by the Portuguese, and, consequently, Zamorins turned an enemy of Kunhali Marikkar and ordered his arrest. Exploiting this political situation, the Portuguese captured Kunhali Marikkar IV, who surrendered to Zamorins on his assurance that he would not be handed over to the Portuguese. Marikkar and Mappila soldiers were taken to Goa to be hanged later (C.E.1600). This was the first phase of freedom movement against foreign imperialists.

    Shaik Zainudin Makhdoom 1 (Zainudin ibnu Ali ibnu Ahmad Al Malabari) was the first great social leader to fight against the Portuguese with a sharp weapon – the Qur’ān. After his death in C.E. 1522, his grandson and a renowned historian, Shaik Zainudun Makhdoom II (Shaik Ahmad Zainudin ibnu Mohammad Al Gazzali) continued the fight against the Portuguese.

    Zainudin was the first person to write a history book on Kerala entitled Tuhfatul Mujahideen. He was also a great scholar, a good organiser and an efficient teacher. In Tuhfatul Mujahideen Shaik Zainudin impressed upon the Muslims to fight against the Portuguese intruders as they were illegal citizens in Kerala. The origin of Makhdoom’s family is in Arabia. Another great leader, Khazi Muhammad’s tradition goes back to Prophet’s disciple Malik ibnu Muhammad. A great scholar, Khazi Muhammad wrote Fatahul Mubeen to invoke Muslims to fight the foreign imperialists. Khazi Muhammad directly took part in the fight against the Portuguese in 1571 C.E. The Muslim force helped Zamorins in Chaliyar war in 1571. He served as Ghazi at Calicut from 1607 to 1616 C.E..

    Tuhafathul Mujahideen gives the history of Portuguese cruelty and the history of Malabar till Shaik Zainudeen II’s time (Hijra 992).

    The dominance of Portuguese came to an end in 1658 when the Dutch drove them out from their settlements in Kerala. By 1663 C.E. Portuguese power was replaced with the Dutch. There was a temporary relief for Keralites from foreign domination from 1765 to 1799 C.E., the period of Mysore Sultans’ dominance. They reformed the people and put an end to landlordism. The defeat of Mysore ruler, Tippu Sultan, paved way for the British to topple all walks of administration in Kerala.

    A new era started with the British period. Protest against the British policy began from different sections of people. As the British exploited the wealth and resources of Kerala, human life became very miserable. Mass protests first came from agriculturists who were charged more tax and paid less wages.

    As the Portuguese destroyed Muslims commercial dominance, Muslims migrated to rural areas where they could get only the job of agricultural labourers. The agricultural lands were predominantly occupied by British people with landlords favouring them. Illogical taxation policy gave heavy burden to people. Tippu Sultan’s agricultural policy was in favour of agriculturists, but the British people favoured landlords and tax collectors.

    People’s resentment came out in the form of revolt in 1836 for the first time. Thereafter a series of such revolts took place till 1921 and from 1836 to 1845 as many as 11 revolts took place. The leaders of the 19th century were Umar Ghazi (1765-1844), Syed Sanaullah Makti Thangal (1847-1912), Syed Fazal Pookoya Thangal (1824_ ) and Syed Alavi Thangal (1753-1844).

    Syed Alavi Thangal was a brave fighter and great scholar. As the British feared Syed Fazal could organise people against them, he was expelled to Makka (1852). Umar Ghazi (1765-1844) was another great fighter who declared non-co-operation with the British administration many years before Congress Party’s non-co-operation movement in 1920s.

    Khilafat Movement started in 1920 with Maulana Shaukat Ali and Gandhiji visiting Calicut. With Maulana’s first visit Mappilas co-operated with Congress en masse. Not only Muslims, even Hindus of upper caste like M.P. Narayana Menon joined Muslims in the Khilafat Movement. Ali Musaliar (Maulavi), Kattilasseri Muhammad, Chembrasseri Thangal, Varian Kunnath Kunhammad Haji were main Mappila leaders and they were joined by Hindu leaders like M.P. Narayana Menon, K.P. Kesava Menon, K. Madhavan Nair, Gopala Menon and so on. M.P. Narayanan Menon, dressed like a Muslim, supported the movement till the end.

    The clash of landlords and tenants got a political colour when the British involved in it supporting the landlords. When the British safeguarded the landlords, the clash became direct with the British. The landlords held a meeting against the tenants. The tenants also formed an organisation named as Malabar Tenants Association. E.M.S. Namboothirippad (former chief minister of Kerala) in his book entitled National Question in Kerala explains the reason for Mappila participation and their role in the freedom movement. In 1920 Manjeri Congress meeting out of 3000 representatives 1000 were Mappila (Muslim) tenants due to Maulana Shaukat Ali’s visit to Calicut.

    Even though 1921 movement is called ‘Mappila Rebellion’, there were many Hindus in the movement. On 15 February 1921 All India Khilafat leader Yakub Hasan arrived in Calicut but was arrested. On 21 February 1921 other Khilafat leaders were arrested. On 27 April 1921 the police lathicharged Congress-Khilafat members gathered at Ottappalam (Palghat District). Illegal arrest and detention caused anger among the workers and they planned to conduct mass movements.

    Southern Malabar regions like Pookotur, Tanur, Tirur, Parappanangadi, Manjeri, Kottakal, Kalpakanchery were centres of revolt.

    Khilafat leaders gave clear instructions that the revolt should not turn communal and no Hindu should be attacked. The Hindus and Muslims who had joined hands with the British were attacked as a part of the freedom struggle.

    The immediate cause of the outbreak of war between Mappila forces and the British was that a caretaker in Nilambur Kovilakam (landlords) Muhammad was dismissed and his salary was not paid for the reason that he had joined the Mappila movement. As he protested it, he was falsely charged and arrested. The Khilafat leaders, who questioned the false charge-sheet, were arrested on 16 August 1921 as per infamous ‘Mappila Act’, intended to detain Mappilas without stating the reason.

    The first war between the British and Mappila forces took place in August 1921. Many Mappilas were killed and many others were rendered wounded. Heavy fighting took place at Tirurangadi and Pookotur. Mappilas occupied many regions held by the British and declared independence with Varian Kunnath Kunhammad Haji as the administrative head. He ruled for six months during which Hindus and Muslims lived in peace. The British began the policy of ‘divide and rule’, and rumours were spread. Mappilas attacked only British officials and even the Hindus like Raman Nair who was seen with a British official, Eten, was not attacked (Malayala Manorama newspaper, 30 August 1921).

    On 25 August 1921 British warship (Comus) arrived and the next day ‘Martial law ordinance’ was declared by which freedom fighters could be tried as per military law. Gurkha regiment was brought to Malabar. Heavy fighting took place at Tirurangadi where Ali Musaliar surrendered to the British to safeguard the Mosque to which the British fired. At Pookotur, Varian Kunnath Kunhahammad Haji lost the war and was caught. Ali Musaliar and Kunhahammad Haji were murdered by the British. By January 1922 the movement came to an end.

    It is calculated that about one lakh people were affected in the incident. Ten thousand people lost life on the spot; ten thousand were missing; fifty thousand were arrested; twenty thousand were expelled to Andaman. This information is furnished by famous historian Dr. K.N. Panikkar in his Kerala History (1992).

    As history of freedom movement is related with the freedom movement under the Congress Party. This part of the movement was not given proper place. Moreover, Gandhiji was misinformed as communal clash. Recent researches revealed how Mappila leaders protected the Hindu community from anti-social elements during the time. Famous historians like Dr. M. Gangadhararan (Mappila Studies), Prof. M.P.S. Menon (Malabar movement) and scholars like E.M.S Namboothirippad and Congress leaders like K. Madhavan Nair (K.P.C.C President) have revealed the real situation during the time and how Mappila leaders punished miscreants who disturbed Hindus.

    No doubt, 1921 Mappila Revolt is one of the great epochs in the history of freedom movement in Kerala.

    The article was first published in Radiance Viewsweekly.

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    By TCN News,

    Hyderabad: Noted Islamic thinker Allama Qari Sakhawat Hussain Barkati and a galaxy of Islamic scholars will address the 22nd Jalsa-e-Rahmatul-lil-Aalameen (PBUH), the public meeting being organized by the Majlis Bachao Tehreek (MBT) on Saturday, January 18 at Moghulpura Playground at 8:00 PM, as part of birthday celebrations of Prophet Mohammad (PBUH).

    Addressing a press conference here on Thursday at NSS the Secretary Reception Committee Md Amjed Ullah Khan (Corporator) said that prominent Islamic scholars from across the country would address the historic meeting at Moghalpura Playgrounds. Besides Allama Sakhawat Hussain Barkati (Odisha), Khateeb-ul-Islam Moulana Shaker Raza (Maharashtra) and Qari Amanullah Balyavi (West Bengal) will also address the meeting, to be supervised by MBT President Dr Khayam Khan.

    Hazrat Mohammad Iqbal Ali Quadri Razvi, Khateeb-e-Sadiq Dr Sadeq Naqvi, Sunni Ulema Board General Secretary Moulana Haseeb-ul-Hasan Siddiqui, Khateeb of Jamia Masjid Mahedvia Moulana Syed Bakhtiyar Alam and MBT Spokesperson Majeedullah Khan Farhat will also address the meeting.

    The meeting will begin with the recition of Holy Quran by Qari Ghulam Ahmed Niazi. Guest poets Dr Muneer-uz-Zaman (Chicago), Qari Tabish Rehaan (Azamgarh), Jamshed Johar (Jharkhand) and Varis Vaarsi (Meerut) will get the honour of reciting Naat-e-Shareef of Prophet Mohammad (PBUH). Other prominent poets who will participate in the meeting include Hafiz Navalur Rahman (Madarsa-e-Barkatul Quraan), Mir Wajahat Ali Azam, Mohammad Haroon Ahmed, Mohammad Meraj Ahmed, Hafiz-o-Qari Syed Meeran Subhan Khundmeri, Qari Mohammad Naseeruddin, Shayer-e-Ahle Bait Meer Dawar Ali and Syed Ali Aadil Tashreef.

    Welcome address will be delivered by Peer-e-Tareeqat Hazrat Syed Shah Darvesh Mohiuddin Quadri Murtuza Pasha.

    Amjed Ullah Khan (Corporator) said that through Jalsa-e-Rahmatul-lil-Aalameen (PBUH), the MBT has been spreading the message of peace and brotherhood not only among various sections of Muslims, but the entire society. It was in 1993, when MBT founder late Md Aman Ullah Khan Sahab began this initiative of spreading the teachings of Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) among the people belonging to different sects and religions. Through this meeting, late Aman Ullah Khan successfully promoted peace, tolerance, mutual respect, brotherhood and communal harmony in the city.

    Elaborate arrangements are being made for the smooth conduct of the meeting which witnesses one of the biggest gatherings in the sub-continent to celebrate the birthday of Prophet Mohammad (PBUH). Separate seating arrangements have been made for women.

    Amjed Ullah Khan has requested the Muslims and also Non-Muslims to participate in large numbers to listen to the thought-provoking speeches of noted Islamic scholars.

    Six welcome arches would be erected at the venue. Of them, four arches will be named after four Khalifas of Islam – Hazrath Abu Baker Siddique (RA), Hazrath Omer Ibn Khattab (RA), Hazrath Osman Ghazni (RA) and Hazrath Ali (RA). Two other arches will be named after Nawab Bahadur Yar Jung (MIM’s founder) and Mo Aman Ullah Khan (MBT founder). He said that the giant screens would be installed around the venue for the massive crowd that is expected to gather.

    Amjed Ullah Khan said that several forces have been trying to attack Islam by linking it with terrorism. He said Islam has established peace and harmony across the world although a few communal forces were trying to misrepresent the teachings to distance people from the religion of peace. He said the teachings of Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) would remain relevant for the entire world forever.

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    By IANS,

    Mumbai: At least 18 mourners were killed in a stampede early Saturday near the Malabar Hill residence here of Dawoodi Bohra spiritual leader Syedna Mohammed Burhanuddin who passed away Friday morning aged 102, officials said.

    Police and Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) officials said the stampede occurred around 1.30 a.m. as thousands of mourners from the community converged near Saifee Mahal where the Syedna's body was kept for people to pay their last respects, a few hours before his funeral procession started from Malabar Hill to Bhendi Bazaar, around four km away.

    The cause of the sudden stampede is not clear. Officials said that at least 17 bodies were taken to Saifee Hospital and one to the Cumballa Hill Hospital.

    Of the 49 who suffered injuries, 46 people were treated and allowed to go while three have been admitted for treatment, BMC Disaster Control officials said.

    Syedna Mohammed Burhanuddin, spiritual head of the Dawoodi Bohra community, died following cardiac arrest here Friday.

    The 1.20 million strong community worldwide was plunged into grief at the loss of the venerated leader and the news of the stampede.

    Maharashtra Home Minister R.R. Patil ordered a probe into the incident which happened in the VIP precincts of Malabar Hill which houses the Raj Bhavan, bungalows of the chief minister, chief justice, ministers, judges, top industrialists, diplomats and celebrities.

    Police Commissioner Satyapal Singh told reporters that though the exact cause of the stampede will only be known once investigations are completed, the gates of Saifee Mahal were suddenly closed to keep out the massive crowd of mourners and that could have led to the tragedy.

    Singh has appealed to the Dawoodi Bohra mourners and general Mumbaikars to maintain calm in view of the tragic incidents.

    Among the 18 victims is Aamir Abbas Kalolwala, 28, of Pune, employed with a multinational company, WNS Ltd.

    Meanwhile, the funeral procession of the Syedna left Malabar Hill for Bhendi Bazar, wending through the narrow and congested roads of south Mumbai.

    The Dawoodi Bohra community elders urged the mourners to maintain calm and discipline, not to venture near the cortege and adhere to security instructions.

    Followed by over 100,000 people, the funeral procession is expected to reach Bhendi Bazaar later this afternoon where the Syedna will be laid to rest beside his father in the Raudat Tahera Mausoleum.

    The Syedna succeeded his father, Syedna Taher Saifuddin, in 1965. His 70-year-old son Syedna Mufaddal Saifuddin has succeeded him.

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