Rising Harassment Of Muslim Youth

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CPI (M) Delegation Meets President 

SRINAGAR – A delegation of CPI (M) leaders today met the President of India to draw his attention towards the grave miscarriage of justice to scores of Muslim youth who were and are being wrongly arrested and charged in cases related to terror attacks in different parts of the country. In some cases these young men have been incarcerated for ten to fourteen years as under trials and then finally acquitted by the Courts as being innocent.

The delegation was led by Prakash Karat CPI (M) General Secretary, Mohammad Yousuf Tarigami (Central Committee Member), Subhashni Ali (Central Committee Member) and Siaba Farooqi (CPI (M) Leader).

As an illustration the CPI (M) delegation presented four Muslim youth including Mohammad Aamir from Delhi, Syed Maqbool Shah from Srinagar and Wasif Haider from Kanpur before the President. These youth were arrested arbitrarily when they were just eighteen or nineteen years of age, implicated in dozens of cases, incarcerated for over ten years and each one of them was, as held by the courts, innocent. Today, they are without jobs, considered unemployable, with dark and uncertain futures.

Muslim youth are the most vulnerable targets today. The draconian provisions of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act are used to deny the normal processes of justice, while there is no time bound procedure for the judicial processes. There is growing feeling of fear and apprehension on the one hand and anger on the other that innocents are being implicated. Young lives have been destroyed, families stricken, forced into social isolation, driven into debt to pay the huge expenditures in legal fees—-the terrible conditions caused by State led justice.

The delegation urged upon The President of India that the arrest of innocent Muslim Youth has reached serious dimensions which require immediate attention particularly in the following three aspects; 

1.Compensation to and rehabilitation of the innocents. By and large most of the victims of State injustice are in a terrible condition and it is essential to ensure justice by providing compensation as well as the means towards a livelihood through provision of employment or any other avenue suggested by the victim.

2.The provision of Special Courts with time bound procedures is essential so as to end the sometimes deliberate prolonging of these cases. All such cases should be settled in a year.

3.In cases where the Court has held that evidence has been concocted or misrepresented by the investigating agencies to implicate innocents, action must be taken against those responsible. This will act as a deterrent in the deliberate implication of innocents.

CPI (M) believes that the draconian provisions of UAPA must be reconsidered. At the time of passage of the Bill in Parliament the party had warned of consequences of keeping such provisions on the Statute book akin to TADA and POTA. Experience has shown the legitimacy of the apprehensions expressed at that time.

The delegation appealed The President of India to take up these issues urgently with the Government of India.

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