Special Reports

Reception for Kazmi at Mushawarat

By MG Correspondent
New Delhi: A reception was held here at the central office of the All India Muslim Majlis-e Mushawarat in the honour of noted Urdu journalist Muhammad Ahmad Kazmi who was released on bail from jail after eight months last month in the case of the terror attack on an Israeli diplomatic car last March. It is widely believed that a case was fabricated to implicate him. The function was chaired by noted journalist Iftikhar Geelani who too was similarly implicated in a false case a few years ago and was released after similar intervention by civil society and media organisations.

AIMMM president Dr Zafarul-Islam Khan introduced the guest and said in his remarks that the millat has shown a spectacular unity in standing with Journalist Kazmi in his hour of trial. He said we believe he is innocent and we are waiting for the final judgment of the court.

Journalist Kazmi offered a background of his professional work since 1983 when he started working for IRNA and later for IRIB and Iran Radio. He also worked for the state television Door Darshan as a newscaster as well as a reporter and in that capacity toured Iraq extensively during the American war on Iraq in 2003. His weekly columns were carried by some 80 Urdu papers across India and abroad and these were very critical of Israel and the US. He was arrested without warrant on 6 March this year as he came out of the India Islamic Cultural Centre. He said some 100 protests were held in Delhi and other parts of India against his arrest which led to a cohesion in the Muslim community as all came out in his support. He said he has forgotten all his pain when he saw this unity in the millat and he is ready to go to jail again if it serves the millat’s unity. He said as a result of his ordeal, his children suddenly grew up and now they are offering him advice. He said that just as I believe in Allah, I believe that I will be exonerated from all charges which are fake. Kazmi said that he thinks that he was arrested for three reasons: 1. to defame Iran; 2. to damage India-Iran relations and 3. to warn people who wrote and spoke against Israel and the US to beware as they too will be dealt with like Kazmi.

He said that there are many people languishing in jails on similar fake case but they are too poor to hire a good lawyer. There is another problem: some lawyers take money from the accused and work for the agencies. He met such people in Tihar Jail, like Engineer Tariq who was drawing a salary of Rs 40,000 per month and now he does not know what his future will be. Likewise there is a terror-accused who was studying in Standard XII and he is not able to realise what has happened to him. He said that the people already incarcerated in jail are being implicated under Section 120B in terror-cases which take place while they are in jails. He said as soon as someone is arrested other agencies hasten to meet him and in no time he is implicated in umpteen terror cases across the country.

He said this war on terror is a national and international plan to terrorise Muslims. We must not get scared and should come to the streets once such an arrest takes place and fight the case legally.

He said that the media was parroting whatever agencies wanted them to but all this changed once the chargesheet was filed. Times of India had claimed that Iran Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) are involved in the attack but it apologised next day.

Journalsist Iftikhar Geelani said that the war on terror is continuing with vengeance and the proof is that UAPA has been further strengthened. He said insecurity is being manufactured and “terrorists” are made by informers of police and intelligence agencies. They come to Muslim localities and ensnare Muslim youth who are later arrested while the informer vanishes. He narrated many cases where innocents were falsely implicated in cases and sent to jails for years. He said that in his own case a Hindustan Times journalist (Nitu Sharma) reported in her newspaper that Geelani has confessed in the court that he is an ISI agent while she was not present in the court.

Other speakers included Muhammad Ahmad, Secretary of Jamaate Islami Hind, Akhlaq Ahmad, Secretary of APCR and Mushtaq Ahmad Alig Advocate.

This article appeared in The Milli Gazette print issue of 16-31 December 2012 on page no. 13

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