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COMMUNITY NEWS: 1-15 June 2002

Shishu mandirs preaching hate
Agra: Mohammed Iqbal, Secretary-General, Jamiat Ahle Hadees, Western Uttar Pradesh, said that it is utterly regrettable that Muslims do not find adequate representation in Government institutions including Ministries. Only 1.63 per cent of Muslims find representation in various government jobs. Undoubtedly, the Government of the day is responsible for this, but, even more responsible are Muslims themselves. Mr Iqbal expressed his views while addressing a gathering here at the annual function of Madrasa Qasimul Uloom Ideal Primary School.
Mr Iqbal also challenged the government to show or prove that the syllabus of Muslim schools or Islamic madrasas contains even a single line which teaches lessons of separatism or terrorism to its students. However, on the other hand, nearly 20,000 shishu mandirs being administered and run by RSS, teach their students the lessons of hatred, terrorism and sectarian divide. 

Hate campaign against Muslims
Hyderabad: A delegation of Muslim intellectuals comprising Dr Majeed Khan, Psychologist, Ghyasuddin Babu Khan, Basharat Ali, prominent structural engineer and others recently met the chief minister of Andhra Pradesh, N Chandrababu Naidu and apprised him about the extreme sense of insecurity and concern that has gripped Muslims in the aftermath of Gujarat carnage and sustained hate campaign against Muslims by communal forces, particularly the Sangh Parivar. The delegation also told him that he is playing two important roles, each one being more important than the other. One role is at the Centre where his role is very important for the very survival of the NDA government and its smooth functioning. His second role is in the capacity of Chief Executive Officer (chief minister) of Andhra Pradesh.
The chief minister assured the delegation members that he will play an important role in the maintenance and strengthening of secularism and communal harmony. The delegation submitted a memorandum to him, stating therein that the entire Muslim community is passing through a very difficult and agonising period for the past one-and-a-half decade. They are now convinced that a sustained campaign is being made for the last few years to marginalise them. It is extremely unfortunate that extremist elements are trying through a planned strategy to neutralise the secular character of India as a result of which a sense of isolationism among Muslims is on the increase. It has become a common feature to label Muslims as anti-national and fundamentalist through sustained propaganda by extremist organizations.
It was further stated in the memorandum that Central government has done very little to check and eliminate the hate campaign being carried on by RSS, VHP, Bajrang Dal and other such organizations with regard to Ramjanmbhoomi movement. 
It was further stated in the memorandum that in his unique capacity, the chief minister can play an important role in stopping or discouraging this hate campaign. The central government should be impressed upon the need to call a conference of chief ministers of all states to consider and discuss the problem of isolation of 200 million Muslims from the national mainstream. The hate campaign being carried on against Muslims should be treated as an act of terrorism. Organizations which pose a danger to peace should be banned. The central government should be impressed upon to declare cases of massacre and arson etc as national calamity. Wherever Muslims made complaints against the culprits, FIRs were not registered but whenever some one made complaints against them, POTO was used against them. Steps should be taken to restore peace, rehabilitate the affected persons and to create confidence and sense of security among them. Complaints of discrimination in providing relief to the affected person have also been received. Voluntary organizations providing relief are being prevented from doing so.

Religious Affairs Committee
New Delhi: The Punjab Waqf Board has constituted a high-level Religious Affairs Committee to settle religious affairs within its area of jurisdiction that is, Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh and Chandigarh. This committee will consist of eminent personalities like Maulana Arshad Madani, Manager Education, Darul Uloom Deoband; Maulana Sayed Nizamuddin, General Secretary of Muslim Personal Law Board; Prof Akhtarul Wase; Maulana Fuzailur Rahman, Mufti of Punjab; Hilal Usmani and Peerji Hafiz of Haryana. This was announced by the Board’s spokesman in its head office at Delhi.
The spokesman said that the recommendations of this committee in all religious affairs, major or minor will be given preference. He further said that the high command has taken several steps for bringing about social reforms and for the improvement of condition of poor employees. Monthly scholarships for providing modern education to children of Imams and Muazzins of more than 400 mosques of the Board have also been started. Muazzins and Imams have also started getting their salaries on the first of every month through the state officers of the areas. He said that during the current year fresh scholarships to more than one thousand widows have been started and postal accounts of all widows have also been got opened by the Board on its own expenses.

Mosques attacked in Haryana
Kaithal: Kaithal, a town in Haryana, has a population of 2,00,000 out of which the population of Muslims is only 600 who are living in 60 odd houses. Another small town, 18 kilometres from Kaithal is Kalayet whose population is 15,000 but there are only two houses of Muslims in this small town. On 1 March some mischievous elements had set five mosques and some houses of Muslims on fire after destroying them. 
Jamaat-e-Islami Hind, Delhi and Haryana, had sent a delegation led by Master Abdul Wahab to find out the facts. The delegation visited these two places on 20 April 2002 which submitted its report as follows: 
According to this report, the head master of RSS school, situated at Chandama Gate in Kaithal provoked the students on some minor grounds who reached the nearby R.K.S.D. College where an open ‘kabaddi’ tournament was being held. The incited students started communal fire between the spectators and the students of RKSD College in which swords, iron rods and other weapons were freely used. An agitated mob of 15,000 set fire to Jama Masjid Mandi and other places after destroying them. Two local persons broke the wall of a house and drove out the entire family consisting of 18 persons.
The mischief mongers also tried to attack the offices of Punjab Waqf Board but the bold steps taken by landlord of the building foiled their attempts. According to an employee of the Board, the role of Satish Ahuja and a few other non-Muslim local residents was indeed praise-worthy on this occasion. During the course of their meeting with the delegation members, Mr Ahuja severely condemned the activities of the RSS activists and said that he and his companions highly respect-graveyards, mosques and mazars of religious divines. The administration, instead of taking action against the rioters, remained a mute spectator. It also did not take any interest in repair of the mosques. The Waqf Board is itself doing the repair work.
The mischief mongers also attacked the Madina Masjid near Shivani Gate in Kaithal and damaged the arches, minarets and walls of this mosque. Even today it is in the same damaged condition. The administration has not taken any steps for its repair. 
The mob also attacked and destroyed a madrasa, mosque and idgah, its main gate, verandah of the madrasa, domes, minarets and boundary wall of the mosque. It also destroyed and set fire to a mosque in Kalayet and also shops and houses of Muslims, resulting in losses worth lakhs of rupees. Muslims of Kaithal and Kalayet are very much afraid even today and consider themselves unsafe (Dawat, Delhi, 13 May 2002). 

Muslim hotel industry destroyed
New Delhi: Gourmets in Ahmadabad will now hardly be able to enjoy good and tasty food in hotels because hotels and restaurants, predominantly owned and run by Muslims, have virtually been wiped out in the recent riots. In Gujarat, hotel industry has traditionally been dominated by a particular sect of Muslims known as ‘Chalias’ whose forefathers had embraced Islam around 800 years ago. Hotels and restaurants owned by these Muslims were selectively burnt and destroyed during the recent riots. Owners of more than 150 such hotels have not been able to muster courage to restart their ancestral business, firstly because they have become paupers overnight and secondly, because even if they try to restart, the risk of repetition of carnage and destruction is always there in view of the professed attitudes and policies of RSS, VHP and Bajrang Dal, towards Muslims. Many of them have already made up their mind to migrate to other states like Uttaranchal and Andhra Pradesh. They cannot secure insurance claims also because insurance companies ask for documents and papers which they all have lost. 


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