CPIML's report on Mau riots
Milli Gazette Online
[To, The Chairman National Human Rights Commission, New Delhi]
A fact Finding team under the leadership of Com. Yashwant Singh (member, state standing committee, CPI(ML) UP.) visited Mau on 25, 26 and 27 Oct. Other members of the team included Sunil Yadav, Gen Secy. All India Students Association, Pranay Krishna, Editor 'Samkaleen Janmat', Om Prakash Singh, Gen. Secy. RYA, K.K. Pandey Managing Editor 'Samkaleen Janmat', Raj Narayan Mishra, (Peoples' Union for Human Rights) and some members of the local unit of PUHR. The fact finding team covered curfew bound localities of Rauza, Chowk, Sanskrit Pathshala, Kasimpura, Sabzi Mandi, Brahmin Tola, Bans ki Masjid, Shahi Katra, Salahabad crossing, Rahjania-Alinagar, Hatti Madari, Munshipura, Sahadatpura, Brahmsthan, Bhiti, Kanharia, Bunker(weavers) Colony, Narja Petrol Pump,Hayat centre, meeting more than a 1000 common people from both the communities as well as intellectuals, journalists, social activists and administrative officers including D.M. and S.P. of Mau district. Till the time a fuller report of the fact finding team with an updated account of human and material losses is compiled, we are summarising our interim observations as under:
1. It was found that incidents which occurred on 9th & 13th of oct. were minor skirmishes which were resolved to the satisfaction of both Hindu & Muslim communities with the intervention of the local administration. However, it was on 14th oct. morning, when activists belonging to different outfits of RSS blocked the Sanskrit Pathshala Tiraha and after stone pelting and sloganeering between both the communities, Ajit Chandel, president of Hindu Yuva Vahini opened fire from his residence, that acted as 'trigger' to the riots. Some 5 Muslim youth were injured in the incident. This triggered a chain of violent clashes between both the communities resulting in irreparable loss to both the communities in terms of human life and material wealth. This incident speaks for itself-that it was pre-planned. However, till date Ajit Singh Chandel who pushed the town of Mau into riot and BJP-MLC Ramji Singh who was the chief architect of the incidence are still free from the clutches of law and are constantly delivering venomous statements in the daily newspapers. Both of them should be arrested immediately failing which the morale of the perpetrators of the riot shall rise and Mau experiment shall be repeated in many parts of eastern U.P. Our team was told by different groups of people belonging to different communities and age - groups that many leaders of SP (Samajwadi Party) & BSP (Bahujan Samaj Party) who were involved in the riots are still roaming free and have not been arrested. Particularly, the role of Amarnath Yadav, Vijay Pratap Singh, Manoj Rai & Arshad Jamal in the riots should be investigated and if such complaints are substantiated by the investigation, they too should be booked immediately. The political beneficiaries of the riot should be strongly dealt with or else the common toiling people of U.P. shall suffer heavily.
Keeping in view the role of Hindu Yuva Vahini in Mau and the dangerous communal mobilisation which this organisation is orchestrating in many pockets of eastern U.P., we demand that it should be banned in U.P.
The district administration must not keep content with the surrender of MLA Mukhtar Ansari. Mukhtar's role in the riots must indeed be investigated, but it should be kept in mind that the politics revolving around Mukhtar's role is motivated to cover up the chief architects behind the riots and suppress the facts. The Mau administration should come clean on whether it called Mukhtar Ansari during riots or not. If it called him, it should also clarify what were the fallouts of his presence in Mau. The Mau administration also owes an explanation regarding an allegation by some prominent citizens that the PAC refused to take orders from C.O. Ram Nayan Yadav on 14th morning when he ordered PAC to disperse the mobs assembled at Pathshala Tiraha.
2. Large scale looting and burning of shops & properties and residential places on one hand and rioting in the outskirts of city on the other are relatively new phenomena emerging in these riots keeping in view a long history of riots in Mau The administration not only remained paralysed during first 48 to 72 hours of riots, at some places PAC actively helped the rioters. In Bunkar (weavers') colony the PAC broke open the doors, beat up children and women, rounded up innocent males of all ages and looted property, all in the name of search operation for recovering weapons which were not there (16 Oct. night) The phenomenon of targeted attacks with the help of PAC (for example at Hatti - Madari on 15 oct.), calls into memory the Gujarat riots. The administrative failure during first 72 hour (whatever might be political or tactical reasons) actually bolstered the feeling of insecurity among both the communities, boosted the morale of rioters and created enough space for all sorts of gory rumours. This is a consensual complaint of the both the communities whether in the Hindu dominated areas or the Muslim dominated areas.
3. The established social equations and political affiliations were broken during the riots. The rift between minorities (Muslims) on one hand and backward/ dalit castes on the other have been created and widened during the riots. Political leaders from different parties transcended their own professed politics and played active role in the riots.
4. Situation is horrible in the interiors of the curfew bound town. 14 days of continuous curfew has pushed many to the brink of starvation. Curfew should be relaxed/ lifted in all such areas immediately and if not possible at least poor people and weavers should be delivered relief, food and medicines under different govt. schemes. Although, the govt. relief works are normally available only during the natural calamities, the govt should make special provisions for distribution of relief/ compensation on priority basis in riot-torn Mau. Active mobilisation of NGO's should be initiated by the administration for relief operations.
5. The irony of the situation today is that despite the fact that several children and old-age people have been released from police custody, many innocents are still under police custody, while those rioters whom people witnessed directly are still roaming free and releasing statements to further vitiate the atmosphere. Immediate release of the innocents is imperative to placate the miseries of the people.
6. In many instances of loot and arson, people could not lodge any FIR. The administration should take a pro-active role in going to these places on their own and register FIR's after receiving any such phone calls. Lots of people still are too terrorised or handicapped by the curfew to come on their own to kotwali or any other place to lodge FIRs.
7. Abuzar (16 yrs) was killed on 15th oct. on the Hatti Madari bandh during shooting by the rioters. The poor weaver family peacefully cremated Abuzar and could not muster enough courage to file an FIR during curfew. The administration should lodge an FIR in this case and include the name of Abuzar in the list of victims too, whom compensation has been announced by the govt.
8. The Mau riots are a big jolt to the weaving community and industry already reeling under economic depression. A special package should be announced for the upliftment of the weaver community and industry.
9. The administrative assessment of the shops, residential buildings and property of both communities looted or burnt should be realistic and proper compensation should be paid to each victim. This survey should also be well advertised. Hundreds of animals which died due to hunger during riots, belong to poor people. Proper compensation to these people should be administered.
10. Our team came across many eye-witness accounts of how people from both the communities risked their own lives to save the people from other community during riots. We met many hindu & Muslim families in areas dominated by other community, living in peace and harmony. This is a ray of hope for Mau.
11. We demand a comprehensive enquiry into the riots by CBI. It is absolutely necessary because so far the govt and administration have not come with any statement with proper facts and figures to counter the one sided portrayal of the riots by the vested interests especially Hindu Yuva Vahini & RSS. The role of electronic and print media should also be brought into the ambit of enquiry and the media should be held accountable for all the reports dished out on the riots.
12. The death toll as per our information as of now is 12. However, an exact figure is still to be ascertained without doubt, which we hope to get by the time we prepare our final report. About the loss of property many individuals provided us with the detailed assessments of losses sustained by them. Mr. Sanjay Singh, president of the Industrialists Association in the industrial area and Mr. Vinod Jaiswal, president Vyapar Mandal, Mau also gave us a tentative list of properties, shops and industries which were looted and burnt. The Mau administration is also compiling the losses through six govt. depts. We can combine many sources to ascertain the volume of property loss in riots in our final report.
Released by Sunil Yadav Gen. Sec. AISA
(Member fact finding Team)
(Received through Pranay Srivastava - email@example.com) «