Not just tolerance but revolution needed to make victims of injustice aware about their Human Rights: Justice Suresh

Seminar on ‘Minorities: Detention, Torture & Discrimination’ held in Bhopal

By Pervez Bari,

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Bhopal: “Today Human Rights are being denied and there is flagrant violation of it by the governments in power with impunity leaving the common man high and dry. There is an urgent need for social justice and involving oneself in the protection of Human Rights of the oppressed. There should be freedom from oppression, slavery, bondage and the right of expression of one’s right.

The above views were expressed by Justice Hosbet Suresh, a retired judge of the Maharashtra High Court and the chairman of National Confederation of Human Rights Organization, (NCHRO), while delivering his presidential address at a seminar here on Saturday.

Justice Suresh spiritedly said that the need of the hour is not just tolerance but a revolution to be ushered wherein the victims of communal violence, police torture and atrocities understand the whole situation and become aware of their human rights. It is then only they can fight out the excesses being committed against them and face their exploitation being indulged in by the politicians of the day for their ulterior motives. The discontent prevailing among the have-nots all over India is due to injustice being meted out to them, he added.

He said that thousands of communal riots have taken place in India since independence of the country but not a single person has been ever convicted or prosecuted up till now. It is not communal violence but political violence indulged by politicians to consolidate their strengths to propel to power, he remarked.

He said that government of the day does not commit itself to check communal riots but makes committees to probe it after communal frenzy is over. He charged that Bharatiya Janata Party, (BJP), leaders do not respect the Indian Constitution but honour the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh, (RSS), flag only.

The seminar was held on “Minorities: Detention, Torture & Discrimination”. It was jointly organized by the NCHRO and Muslim Co-ordination Committee, (MCC), Bhopal in Mulla Ramuzi Bhavan, M.P. Urdu Academy hall.

The key-note address was delivered by Justice Faizanuddin, a retired judge of Supreme Court of India.. Among others who spoke at the seminar included Advocate K.P.Mohammed Shareef, secretary general NCHRO from Kerala; Anand Prakash Pandey, member CPI Secretariat; K.S. Dhillon ex-DGP of Madhya Pradesh; Shafique-ur-Rahman Durrani, Director Muslim Marg Darshak Mandal. Fr. Prashant Jadhav from Khargone was also on the dais.

Dr. Hameedullah Nadwi of Barkatullah University while welcoming the guests said that ‘there is no need to despair because there are a lot of rules and laws to give a full protection to minorities it they are tortured.

Saeed Bilgrami, secretary MCC, proposed a vote of thanks while this correspondent, who was convenor of the seminar, conducted the proceedings.

Justice Faizanuddin in his key-note address explained point-wise the different Articles of the Constitution of India connected with minorities. He said that unity in diversity is the wealth of India, but two-nation theory caused a big damage to nation. He explained in detail about the condition of minority and majority in many countries of the world. He focused on the percentage of working Muslim persons in judiciary, administration, police and other key posts.

He said that in the present context of our minorities’ situation, the remedy or solution of their problems in India is “Toleration”. The evil of intoleration is the single largest source of conflict between communities, he pointed out.

Today’s world is a global village in which all people are expected to bear with diversities of faith, colour, race, language and culture. A new world order based upon a true and genuine spirit of “Tolerance is the key concept which is essential for growth of conflict free society”, he opined.

He appealed to propagate this concept of tolerance amongst masses and particularly in different communities and do some thing concrete with a view to keep the candle of hope for a better world, burning in the hearts and mind of more than 100 crores masses of India by preserving Human Rights and happiness of all with a resolve for an honest and sincere deal in future.

“Let us at the dawn of this New-year 2008 pray sincerely for His blessings and generosity for the whole mankind on this planet of ours for a better and peaceful world far from all vices, atrocities and violations of Human values and Rights in all its forms”, he said.

Former DGP K. S. Dhillon said exclusiveness is not the culture of India but on the contrary the hallmarks are inclusiveness and tolerance. He decried the fundamentalist “Sangh Parivar” attempt to convert India into a “Hindu Rashtra” by adopting hardline approach against the minorities in order to sway the majority Hindu community towards it and ride to power. This he termed it as “Break India policy” – a departure from the ethos for which India stands for.

Dhillon denounced all political parties for nourishing communalism for their political gains. He asked minorities to become active part of the civil society. He advised Muslims to come out of their ghettoes and practice liberalism.

He said the police force has become an instrument of the government in power. It acts as the administration directs it. Political parties in power use them as they like. It is sad that police is still working under the 150-year-old 1861 Act, prepared by the Britishers, which categorically states that it is the representative of the government, he moaned.

Earlier, addressing the seminar Adv. Mohammad Shareef, secretary general of NCHRO, said in his introductory speech that NCHRO is a platform of human rights activists. “To provide justice to minorities we have established this confederation”, he asserted.

Shareef said that communal riots have been engineered not only in Madhya Pradesh but also in many other states in a short period of time as in the past. He explained in detail as to how in every part of the country Muslims and minorities are being tortured.

Anand Pandey of CPI said it is a tragedy that those who do not have faith in the Constitution of India and in the judiciary are winning elections. They talk of religion while behave against it. He quoted from a book and said that RSS stalwart Golwalkar had said that Bharat was a Hindu nation and will remain a Hindu nation. He explained point-wise the alleged rabid views of Golwalkar.

Pandey pointed out that in the BJP-ruled Madhya Pradesh Government about 130 communal riots have taken so far since it came to power in December 2003. The atrocities on Minorities have increased manifold in the state, he added, and charged that the fascist Hindutva forces are adopting biased attitude towards them and trying to keep them under constant state of fear.

The State government is implementing welfare schemes in the name of one culture such as “Kanyadaan Yojana”, “Godbharai Yojana”, “Bal Sanjivini Abhiyan” etc. It is an attempt to directly influence the people of majority community.

Shafique-ur-Rahman Durrani said the word minority is unconstitutional. In the Constitution of India it is clearly stated: “We the people of India……….”. So all the difference between the communities comes to an end here, he said. Unfortunately the politics has divided society in two distinct parts as minority and majority. They have made minority community a burden which only receives while the majority being the donor. Unless Muslims adopt a positive approach they cannot succeed in life and this is also propagated by Islam, he remarked.

Durrani without naming BJP said the party by swearing to keep the integrity of India intact has in fact become a threat for its disintegration. He lamented that the minorities are not even allowed to protest against the atrocities being committed upon them.

Many victims of communal violence and police atrocities from various cities of Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan had come to attend the seminar to uncork their miseries and seek guidance as how to face the bitter realities perpetuated by the State. Some of them namely Shafique Siddiqui from Burhanpur, Leda Gyansingh from Khargone district, Asif from Maksi, Ansar Khan from Lateri, Qazi of Narsinghgarh Maulana Abdul Ayub and Mrs. Sabiha Naeem (wife of Mohammad Naeem, who is in Khandwa jail) & Amanullah from Kota in Rajasthan narrated their woes and the injustice meted out to them which moistened the eyes of many as one and all heard in total silence.

Later, poet Rahbar Jaunpuri recited his poems highlighting the sacrifices made by minorities, especially Muslims, and their patriotism for India. The poems were highly appreciated by one and all on the occasion. The tense environment created by the victims’ plethora of woes somewhat appeared relaxed thereafter. ([email protected])