Police Charges Against Umar Khalid Baseless, Says his Father SQR Ilyas

Police Charges Against Umar Khalid Baseless, Says his Father SQR Ilyas

Dr SQR Ilyas, President, Welfare Party of India

Dr SQR Ilyas, President, Welfare Party of India

Zafar Aafaq | NEW DELHI

Former Jawaharlal Nehru University student and anti-CAA activist Umar Khalid’s father SQR Ilyas has said that the case against his son is baseless and police have no evidence against him to back their charges of sedition and unlawful activities as police have invoked UAPA, a controversial anti-terror law.

Ilyas was speaking exclusively with Clarion India from Karkarduma court where Khalid was to be presented before a magistrate for remand.

The police have invoked Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act and sedition just to make it difficult for him get bail and prolong his detention,” he said. The police have accused Khalid of being a “main conspirator” in Delhi riots along with former AAP councillor Tahir Hussain and UAH activist Khalid Saifi.

Ilyas denied the allegation that his son held a meeting with Hussain. “The police are saying Khalid’s phone was tracked close to the network tower located in an area where Hussain’s phone was also traced. But how does this prove the two met.”

Delhi Police Special Cell arrested Khalid late on Sunday night after 11 hours of interrogation. They have also accused him of helping with funds for activities they say instigated riots.

Ilyas said that he was not allowed to meet his son. However, the police let Khalid’s lawyer meet Khalid.

Khalid’s arrest has sparked a massive public reaction as people from across political and social spectrum have come out in support of him. They say that his arrest is a case of witch-hunt against voices of dissent.

Meanwhile, Khalid’s speech on peace and national unity are being widely shared on social media.

The CAA triggered a wave of peaceful protests across India. Muslim women took to streets and began indefinite sit-ins at various places across the country asking the government to revoke the “discriminatory” law which went against the secular and democratic spirit of the constitution of the country. According to the law, migrants from neighbouring countries living in India will be granted citizenship. But it specifically excludes Muslims. Critics say that the law, if coupled with the potential nationwide citizenship test, will enable the disenfranchisement of Muslim citizens. They will be sent to detention centres if they fail to prove their citizenship in accordance with new norms.

Irked by the protests, senior leaders and ministers from the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), in their speeches, exhorted their supporters to shoot the protesters! “Goli maaro salon ko” became the war cry of the mobs supporting the ruling party. This eventually led to outbreak of violence in parts of Delhi. The carnage that followed left behind a trail of death and destruction.

More than 50 people were killed, hundreds of houses set ablaze and many families displaced in three days of violence. The police were accused of siding with the rampaging mobs throughout the violence and arson.

The same Delhi Police has made a series of detentions in the name of investigation and  have invoked chosen the UAPA as a weapon against the people detained .

The detainees include student activists, protest coordinators including Meeran Haider, Shafi ur Rehman. Khalid Saifi, Gulifsha, Asif Iqbal Tanha, Devangna Kalita, Natasha Narwal and ordinary youths from the Muslim community.

2 Haryana youths detained over attack on Umar Khalid

2 Haryana youths detained over attack on Umar Khalid

2 Haryana youths detained over attack on Umar KhalidNew Delhi : The Delhi Police has detained two youth from Haryana for their murderous attack on Jawaharlal Nehru University student leader Umar Khalid, days after their self-confession video went viral, an officer said on Monday.

“Special Cell teams detained Darvesh Shahpur and Naveen Dalal from Haryana on Sunday following a tip-off of their location,” the senior police officer told IANS.

In the video that went viral on August 16, Shahpur and Dalal said that they will surrender to police at a gurdwara near the house of freedom fighter Kartar Singh Sarabha the next day.

“We are responsible for the attack on Khalid (outside Constitution Club) that was meant to be a gift to our country men before the Independence Day. We appeal to police to not punish any innocent youngster for our crime,” they claimed in the video.

Khalid was attacked by an unknown assailant carrying a revolver on August 13 at a tea stall outside the Constitution Club. Accused of raising anti-national slogans in 2016. The student leader survived the attack.

“We are presently interrogating them to establish the reality behind their claims or whether they created the video clip to only create sensation on social media. We are investigating,” the officer added.

—IANS

Guarantee no attack on critics of government: Umar Khalid to Modi

Guarantee no attack on critics of government: Umar Khalid to Modi

Umar KhalidNew Delhi : A day after he survived an attack on his life in the heart of the capital, JNU scholar Umar Khalid on Tuesday urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to assure in his Independence Day speech that critics of the government won’t be targeted.

“Modiji, you had asked for suggestions for your IDay speech. I have a suggestion to make – can you please state that you guarantee that there will be no attack on those who criticize your government and its many failures,” Khalid said in a post on social media.

The Prime Minister has sought suggestions from citizens for his Independence Day speech.

In his post in response to Modi’s solicitation, the JNU scholar, who is fighting a legal battle since he was charged with sedition in 2016, said the attempted gun attack on his life on Monday was to “scare us into silence”.

“What does ‘freedom’ even mean if the citizens of this country have to be ready to die for their ‘crime’ of just being vocal against injustice.

“The fact that two days before Independence Day, in one of the most ‘high security’ zones of the national capital, an armed assailant could dare to attack me in broad daylight only goes onto show the brazen impunity that some people feel they enjoy under the present regime.”

He also said if something happened to him tomorrow, “then do not just hold that ‘unidentified gunman’ responsible”.

The real culprits, he said, were “those who from their seats of power have been breeding an atmosphere of hatred, of bloodlust and fear… Those who have provided an atmosphere of complete impunity for assassins and mob lynchers… those spokespersons of the ruling party (BJP) and the prime time anchors and TV channels who have spread canards about me”.

He said even after the police has registered an offence under Section 307 and Arms Act, saffron agents were trying to suggest that the attack never happened.

Khalid said the arrests made in the murder case of Gauri Lankesh exposed the hands of “Hindutva terror outfits”.

“Tomorrow while there will be once again a shower of high voltage lies and sugar-coated jumlas from the ramparts of Dalmia Group’s Red Fort, our fight for real freedom and dignity, and making the dreams of Bhagat Singh and Babasaheb Ambedkar into a reality will continue with greater resolve.”

—IANS

JNU scholar Umar Khalid shot at, escapes

JNU scholar Umar Khalid shot at, escapes

JNU scholar Umar Khalid shot at, escapesNew Delhi : JNU scholar Umar Khalid, accused of raising anti-national slogans in 2016, on Monday survived an attempt to kill him in the heart of the capital, saying he escaped only because of his friends.

Police, however, said it was not clear whether the gunshot fired by the attacker was aimed at him or not.

A shaken Khalid told the media that a man approached him with a gun when he was outside the Constitution Hall, tried to overpower him and shoot him down.

“Thankfully, my friends were there with me. They tried to overpower him but he ran away and he fired from across the road.

“I was very scared at that moment when he pointed a gun at me. At that moment, I was reminded of what happened to (writer activist) Gauri Lankesh. I thought that moment has arrived,” Khalid said.

Joint Commissioner of Police Ajay Chaudhary said preliminary investigation showed that an unknown man dragged Khalid when he was with five friends at a tea stall outside the Constitution Club, not far from Parliament.

“A scuffle took place between them,” the officer said. “The accused managed to escape. It is not clear yet whether the attacker fired or not with his weapon.”

He said the case was being probed from all possible angles. A weapon found at the spot was being examined. “We have deployed the best officers to nab the attacker.”

Khalid went to the Constitution Club to attend a “United Against Hate” programme where the listed speakers included noted lawyer Prashant Bhushan, MP Manoj Jha and journalist Amit Sen Gupta.

Arif, a witness to the crime, said Khalid was with him when they were targeted. He said there were at least two attackers. But police spoke about only one attacker.

Deputy Commissioner of Police Madhur Verma earlier quoted Khalid as saying that someone pounced on him and pushed him around 2.30 p.m.

“Thereafter he tried to fire at Khalid. But the person couldn’t fire immediately,” Verma said.

The officer said the local police were not informed about the programme at the Constitution Club, a popular venue for seminars, meetings and press conferences.

The incident took place about half-a-kilometre from Parliament and behind the high-security Reserve Bank of India. The Constitution Club is itself located in a block of apartments, many of which are allocated to MPs.

Khalid was rusticated and fined by the Jawaharlal Nehru University last month after he along with two others — Kanhaiya Kumar and Anirban Bhattacharya — were found guilty of raising anti-national slogans at a poetry-reading event in the campus on February 9, 2016.

Khalid said he felt that Monday’s incident was an attempt to silence anyone who raise their voice against the Modi government.

He said that in the last two years, since the JNU episode which led to his jailing, “there has been misinformation everywhere” about him and his politics. He accused a section of the media of spreading propaganda against him.

—IANS

Guarantee no attack on critics of government: Umar Khalid to Modi

No coercive steps against Umar Khalid till Friday, HC tells JNU

Umar KhalidNew Delhi : The Delhi High Court on Thursday restrained the Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) from taking any coercive steps against the student-activist Umar Khalid till Friday.

“JNU shall not take any coercive action against the petitioner (Khalid),” Justice Siddharth Mridul said and listed the matter for Friday for further hearing.

Khalid was rusticated and fined by a university panel in connection with a 2016 incident when anti-India slogans were allegedly raised at an event.

Justice Siddharth Mridul’s order came while hearing Khalid’s plea challenging the university’s order which has imposed a fine against him.

The court also issued notice to JNU and others and sought the response on the student’s plea.

Khalid’s advocate told the court that former Jawaharlal Nehru University Students Union leader Kanhaiya Kumar has also approached the court and his matter is listed for Friday for further hearing.

Kumar in his plea has sought quashing of the order passed by JNU through its Chief Proctor on July 4.

JNU on July 4’s order held Kumar and others guilty under clause of Discipline and Proper Conduct of Students of JNU and fined them.

The order has been issued based on the report by a high-level enquiry committee that was set up on February 11, 2016.

An enquiry found student-activist Umar Khalid, along with Kumar and Anirban Bhattacharya, guilty in the February 2016 episode in which a group of young men allegedly raised “anti-national” slogans.

It had also recommended rustication of Umar Khalid apart from imposing financial penalty on 13 other students for violation of disciplinary norms.

Kumar, a member of the Communist Party of India’s student wing, was the President of the varsity’s student union that year.

The three were accused — though none yet chargesheeted by police — of raising slogans against the integrity of India during a poetry-reading gathering of students at Sabarmati Dhaba inside the JNU campus on February 9, 2016.

—IANS