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Gujarat continues to burn, mobs still rule streets

'Newton' Modi, who boasted to have controlled the riots in 'record 72 hours' is yet to calm Gujarat. Ahmedabad, Vadodra and other areas are again under curfew. People are still being stabbed and killed, businesses are still being looted and torched. Even refugees are being attacked by the saffron criminals while their political bosses are demanding refugees’ eviction from their shelters because, to thier sick minds these hapless people pose 'security threat'..

Even after a month since the eruption of the planned violence following the still to be probed Godhra train incident on 27 February, the act of ethnic cleansing continues unabated. Well-secured under government patronage the marauders are doing their bit to do a Bosnia in our own backyard under Milosevic Modi’s leadership. The events clearly point out that a secret army has been reared by the saffron bosses to be used to teach lessons, economically cripple and uproot Muslims.

Thousands of people have been burnt alive (official figures have crossed 700) and at least a hundred thousand people have been rendered homeless. The number of people taking shelter in camps run by riot-hit Muslims themselves exceeds fifty thousands in Ahmadabad alone. 

As we go to press on 25 March, there is no semblance of law in Gujarat, no police to enforce order, and the army too is selectively and thinly deployed and subject to the orders of those who ran the street show since 28 February. The killer mobs are roaming streets to ensure that not a single Muslim man or woman is left alive. 

A delegation that visited the riot hit areas in mid-March places the casualty at more than two thousand Muslims. The delegation, whcih included the co-editor of Communalism Combat Teesta Setalwad, visited some of the worst-hit areas in the state. It said that the way Muslims were killed and their businesses destroyed in Ahmadabad, Surat and Baroda shows that everything was very well- planned. It is commonly said that what has come out in the open is just a fraction of the human and material losses in the state. The toll in rural areas stays unknown. Sangh hooligans have not allowed free movement till now. The true picture may never come out. Many localities, mosques and dargahs have been obliterated from the face of the earth in quick, precision operations which are beyond the pale of ordinary hoodlums.

How the criminals’ writ runs in Gujarat was evident when they threatened the National Human Rights Commission’s chairman Justice JS Verma and his people in Ahmadabad after they met with the representatives of various non-government organizations on 20 March. Justice Verma has rejected the report sent by Modi government and has threatened to prepare NHRC’s own report if Gujarat government fails to send a satisfactory report within five days.

These pogroms for the first time employed new tactics to terrorise people and rape and burning alive was used everywhere as a weapon to instill fear as happened in Bosnia. Reports of gang rape preceding murder and roasting alive of Muslim women are coming out from every area. Survivors in Shah Alam and other camps in Ahmadabad have narrated as to how their sisters and daughters were taken as loot by the saffron killers. Narrative of Muslim man whose mother, wife and daughter were all outraged by the saffron crusaders before being torched, has been flashed all over the world.

To top it all now a minister of Modi cabinet does not want to leave the happless refugees in peace and has launched a campaign to evict them from their ramshackle camps. Gujarat Civil Supplies Minister Bharat Barot demanded on 20 March that Muslims in four relief camps in his constituency, Dariapur-Kazimpur in Ahmadabad, be shifted away immediately!. In a letter to the state home minister, who himself is a pointman of the VHP, Barot has demanded that these camps be disbanded: ‘Hindus no longer feel secure in their presence in the locality. It is necessary to remove these camps as some of the outsiders living in these camps have indulged in rioting.’ This minister has been threatening the camp manager, Inamul Haque Iraqi, to shift the camp or face consequences. 

While all this is taking place in the ‘world's largest democracy’ no one is coming forward to assist the riot victims. No relief, local or international, is coming forward. No national newspaper has launched a campaign to collect donations for relief work and the prime minister has forgotten that he sits on a huge fund exactly for such contingencies. This overall apathy is in sharp contrast with what was witnessed after the earthquake in the same area a year ago. Human rights organizations at home and abroad are mum. No embassy has uttered a word. Muslim countries too are no exception. Barring Pakistan, Bangladesh and Iran, no other Muslim country seems to have uttered a single word on this genocide. No relief has come from oil-rich Arab countries for their fellow Muslims in this hour of utter need. 

Indian Muslims, who have been in the forefront of supporting pan-Islamic causes for a century, will have to take stock of their situation. They need to rethink their priorities and devise ways to save them while leading their lives as principled and law-abiding citizens. Gujarat should be a watershed for the community and the country. Enough should be enough.

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