Summoning Sajjad Kargili, Students Shows Extreme Authoritarianism: KDA

File Photo of Sajjad Kargili

Kargil- The Kargil Democratic Alliance has condemned the Ladakh Police over its summon to political activist Sajjad Kargili — for his tweet on the violence in Tripura — and some student leaders in Kargil as "extreme authoritarianism by the authorities."

The alliance, an amalgam of various political and religious parties based in Ladakh's Muslim majority Kargil district, in a statement issued on Wednesday, said the summon was tantamount to "suppression of voices against violence in any form."

Kargili's tweets on the tensions in Tripura, the alliance said, "was a condemnation of an act of violence, which was not in any way undemocratic or unconstitutional."

"This violates the basic constitutional rights of freedom of expression and liberty of thoughts in the democratic set up of our nation," the alliance said. "The very reason that India is being referred to as a mature democracy, is that it values dissent."

"We strongly condemn the unfortunate action of the local police," the alliance said.

The police had on October 29 summoned Kargili to the Baroo police station in Kargil. According to the order, he was accused of "spreading hatred" and was directed to "produce reliable, trustworthy and concrete evidence to show that such an incident has actually taken place [in Tripura]."

Several mosques and Muslim-owned properties had been destroyed by Hindu mobs in the north eastern state, according to reports in the international press. The violence and heightened tensions in the region has largely been overlooked by the national media.

"Further Kargil Democratic Alliance condemns the summon of student leaders by local police Kargil for supporting the peaceful march organized by the different students associations," they said. "This is not the way to deal with a democratic protest as peaceful demonstration is an elementary right in a democratic society. This shows extreme authoritarianism by the authorities.

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