Fact finding report reveals excesses by Meerut police against Muslims

Fact-finding report by activists alleges that Muslim neighbourhoods were targeted and violence may have been unleashed deliberately

UP Violence

A fact-finding team comprising activist Kavita Krishnan, psephologist-turned-politician Yogendra Yadav and research scholar Riad Azam visited Meerut to take stock of ground realities in wake of violence during protests against the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA). They presented their findings in a report that also contains eyewitness testimonies, where serious allegations have been made against the UP police.

For instance, a dead man named Asif has been accused of being the ‘mastermind’ of the violence that erupted on December 20. But according to Asif’s father Idul Hasan, 20-year-old Asif was an e-rickshaw driver. He left for work, but parked his rickshaw and decided to come back home when the violence erupted. His family was unable to contact him and only discovered that he had been killed when the person transporting his body to the morgue called them. Asif sustained bullet injuries to his chest, but the family had not received a post-mortem report at the time of publishing the report.

Another testimony by Mr Alauddin, Director of Falaah-e-Aam Hospital, about the aftermath of the violence near Jama Masjid revealed that “police began cracking down harshly on the protesters and went inside various Muslim neighbourhoods shooting. This eventually led to the death of 6 people (five of them died on the spot and the 6th died on 24/12/19). Among those dead, 1 died at Gulzar-e-Ibrahim Mohalla, 1 at Jaliwali Gali, 1 at Ghantewali Gali, 2 died in Ahmednagar (9 and 10 no Gali). Another person got shot near City Hospital and eventually died at a hospital in Delhi on 24/12/19. The people who died at Gulzar-e-Ibrahim, Jaliwali Gali and Ghantewali Gali were not part of the protests.”

The entire report may be read here:

Meanwhile, the organisers of the nationwide peaceful protests under the banner of Hum Bharat Ke Log also issued a statement condemning police brutality against protesters. The condemns the Uttar Pradesh government for “employing unlawful and lethal tactics to harass and intimidate” protesters and also alleges, “The authorities are brazenly targeting Muslims, besides all peoples movements and human rights activists, throwing democratic norms, constitutional rights and the due process of law to the winds. The goal is not just to suppress all dissent against CAA/NRC in Uttar Pradesh, but to send a signal to anyone who may dare to raise a voice against anything.”

Taking the Adityanath government head-on the statement says, “There is little doubt that all this is happening under the personal direction, sanction and supervision of the  Chief Minister. He publicly announced a doctrine of revenge against the protesters. In a shocking audio tape in wide circulation, a senior police official can be heard saying that he has the CM’s instructions and full immunity to beat the violent protesters to pulp, so as to teach everyone a lesson. Sadly, none other than the Prime Minister has openly supported this wanton cruelty and breakdown of law and order.”

The statement identifies the regime’s tactics such as unlawful mass detentions, custodial torture, use of excessive force and intimidation of friends and families of detainees. It also minces no wrds while holding the administration accountable for selectively targeting members of the Muslim community. It says, “There are more than one reliable reports of the police raiding Muslim colonies, entering homes, ransacking them, and detaining people indiscriminately. In several places, state authorities have sealed shops and commercial establishments owned by Muslims. Notices have been issued to Muslims unrelated to any protest or violence to compensate for the damage to public property.”

Their demands are as under:

1. The government of Uttar Pradesh must to stop this state-sponsored attack, release innocent detainees forthwith, quash FIRs with large number of anonymous accused;

2. A credible and independent inquiry by an SIT under the supervision of the Supreme Court should be set up so as to ascertain the truth about protests, violence, police action and killings;

3. Institutions like the National Human Rights Commission and the National Minorities Commission must take up this case suo motto and institute immediate inquiries into the allegations about violation of human rights and assault on the minorities, respectively;

4. Police officials and personnel, whose complicity in police atrocities is beyond doubt, should be suspended and all the guilty should be brought to the book;

5. Suitable compensation should be paid to those injured in police action and to the family of the deceased;

6. Citizens constitutional right to assemble and protest in a peaceful manner should be restored;

7. To ease the climate of fear and suspicion, and to allow a meaningful dialogue, the Government of India must announce that it is not going ahead with NRC and NRC-linked-NPR.

The entire statement may be read here:




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