Appeal to Observe 6th December
as Accountability Day
Milli Gazette Online
I am writing this to appeal to you to observe 6th December, the day Babri Masjid was demolished in 1992, as Accountability Day, to review the measures taken to make rule of law and prompt delivery of justice a reality in India, the absence of which was responsible for this act of national shame.
In this regard while welcoming the Prime Minister’s apology to the Sikh community or the wrongs done to them in 1984, and the steps taken to provide adequate compensation to the victims of the carnage and promise of legal action against officials indicted by Nanavati Commission, we regretfully note the absence of any such move to provide similar adequate compensation to victims of other major riots, and lack of any action against leaders and officials indicted by other Inquiry Commissions.
The most blatant example of continued denial of justice to Muslims is that of Hashimpura (Meerut) where the next of kin of more than forty youths killed by the PAC in May 1987 are yet to get any adequate compensation and the trial of guilty is yet to start. Similarly no action has been taken against officials and police personnel indicted by Justice Srikrishna for Mumbai riots 1992-93.
Human rights groups and activists in India need to give priority to the issue of secular justice, which requires equality of standards for payment of compensation to victims and legal proceedings against erring leaders and officials whose acts and omissions led to such large scale violence.
In the year 2006 we hope the Liberahan Commission inquiring into demolition of Babri Masjid, as well as Nanavati Commission inquiring into Gujarat 2002 carnage will submit their reports. It is also likely that the special court on Ayodhya may decide the title suit in the coming year. Irrespective of the nature of judicial verdict on Ayodhya, and findings of the inquiries the country will again be facing a challenge from those organized groups who gain from communal divide—the secular political and intellectual class and humanist groups will have to show that they have acquired not only requisite courage, and integrity but adequate insight and clarity to be able to deal with the situation—so as to eventually prepare the nation to face the Truth—historical and present-day in all its dimensions—and attempt Reconciliation, the way for which can be paved only when the unrepentant guilty are punished, and innocent victims get rehabilitated. Let the year 2006 be devoted to such a process of restorative justice and durable reconciliation and peace.
Iqbal A. Ansari, Convener,
Inter-Community Peace Initiative
Syeda Manzil, Muzammil Compound 4/1703, Dodhpur, Aligarh 202001
Tel: 0571-3098957 E-mail:firstname.lastname@example.org (01/12/05) «