Afzal Issue: Owaisi Questions UPA’s Secular Claims

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NEW DELHI: Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (MIM) leader and Member Parliament from Hyderabad, Asaduddin Owaisi Wednesday took the issue of not informing Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru’s family before his hanging in Tihar jail on February 9 in the Parliament.

“When it comes to Afzal Guru, I do not want to comment on the sentence. What I would like to say to the Government is that there is one politician from Haryana who is convicted and who can make telephone calls and address public meetings in Haryana, but you did not have the courtesy to at least allow Afzal Guru’s wife to speak to him before he was hanged,” Owaisi said while speaking on the motion of thanks to the President’s address in the Parliament.

“What kind of humanism are you practising here? What kind of message are you sending?” he asked.

Owaisi asked the government about the fate of Ranganath Mishra Commission. “Where have the recommendations gone? You are in the ninth year of your rule. You have to go to the public. The Muslims are not going to accept these announcements. They want to see some practical change and development. But unfortunately it is not there. It has not happened,” he said.

The Hyderabad MP said that terrorism was a new religion. “Terrorists are hurting us, killing us. They do not see whether I am a Hindu or a Muslim. But we want to politicise this. We want to cast aspersions on it. It is high time that the country got united,” he said.

He urged the government to control media which, according to him, after half an hour of every bomb blast knows what happened. “If that is the case, the media anchors should be made the Home Minister of the country. All these media anchors who sit on their thrones at nine in the night and pronounce judgments, know everything. Where is this information coming from?” he asked.

On the situation in Afghanistan he requested the Government of India to examine his proposal of opening a diplomatic channel with Taliban. “US is leaving Afghanistan in 2014. We have invested crores of rupees in the development of Afghanistan. If we do

not engage with them, then we will be allowing our neighbouring country to enter over there and use that territory for ant-inational activities. 

“I once again urge upon the Government to act on its promises. Your promises are going to make a difference, whether you come back here or not. If not, the Muslims have another fourth route also. It is not just three, they have a fourth route also. Please ensure that these promises are implemented,” he added.

Quoting example of Azad Ahmad Mirza, a DRDO scientist who was released by the Bangalore Police after six months, he said: “He was released today because the NIA did not find any evidence against him. His contract was terminated by the DRDO. What was the reason? He had a two year contract as a scientist. We do not have a scientist in our community. He was wrongly implicated. He was released by NIA. The DRDO has cancelled his contract.”

“I want to know from the Government what sort of secularism it is practicing. Col. Purohit is lodged in a jail in Maharashtra for four years and the Same MoD is giving him his salary for the last four years. Why do you not monitor all these things? This was revealed not by me, this was revealed through an RTI application filed by Maj. Upadhyay who is a co-accused with Col. Purohit. The Government does not know about it,” he rued.

“There is another issue which I want to bring to your notice. It is high time that the Delhi Special Police Cell is disbanded. Or at least create a responsible and accountable mechanism. The Jamia Association has come out with 16 cases wherein all these boys are exonerated. They spent four to eight years in jail, and the Government asks for examples. I am giving 16 cases of those boys who are exonerated by courts of law, who were picked up by the Delhi Special Police Cell. Does this Government have the guts to suspend the Delhi Special Police Cell officers who have destroyed the lives those boys?” he added.

On literacy level of Muslims in India, he said, “Both Muslim OBC and general Muslims are low or as compared to STs, SCs and Hindu OBCs and Hindu general. Literacy level of SCs and STs have improved both in rural and urban but not for Muslims. When it comes to matriculation, in both rural and urban areas, Muslims are the lowest matriculation in numbers in fact lower than SCs and STs. If you compared the period for 2009-10, the levels have gone down.”

“When we come to public employment, in 2010-11, the re is no minority representation in the Department of Scientific and Industrial Research; no minority representation in the Department of Land Reforms; no minority representation in the Ministries of Law and Justice, Social Justice and Empowerment; and no minority representation in the Department of Food and Public Distribution. In the Ministry of Defence in 2010-11, 800 recruitments we re made and only 50 people belonging to minorities were recruited. This speaks volumes about the 15 Point Programme. In the Department of Biotechnology, the same thing is there. In the Department of Financial Services, for 2010-11, 4702 were recruited from minority communities out of 65,000 in Group A and Group B services. Then the Planning Commission says that the poverty ratio estimates for Muslims in urban areas is 33.9 per cent. Where will we go if this is the representation in public employment?” he asked.

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