Raids in Jamia Nagar: Activists protest outside Delhi Police headquarters

By TCN Special Correspondent,

New Delhi: Several teachers and students from different universities of Delhi, activists and concerned citizens staged a dharna on Monday afternoon outside the Delhi Police headquarters, protesting against ‘illegal’ raids in Jamia Nagar and communal profiling of its residents.

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According to the organizers, Jamia Teachers Solidarity Association (JTSA) and Concerned Citizens of Delhi, “the protest was called to resist the criminalizing of the locality by the police and its various agencies”. The agitators demanded immediate halt on illegal raids and communal witch-hunt.

Speaking on the occasion, Manisha Sethi, President of JTSA alleged, from the events of the past few days it appears that when in need of showing results, the Delhi police turns to Jamia Nagar. The various official and unofficial cells of the Delhi Police have turned Jamia Nagar into a happy hunting ground. Talking about some cases, she said, “last week, when the Special Cell wanted to nab someone in an auto theft, it lands up at Jamia Nagar—in plain clothes and private cars and virtually abducts suspects”.

She further alleged, “similarly on the intervening night of 15-16 February, when the so-called Bangladeshi cell of Delhi Police needed to boost its success rate, it arrived in this part of the city—in the dead of the night—to round up poor workers from Kishanganj and Darbhanga, accusing them of being illegal Bangladeshis—despite them producing their voters ID cards and other proof to the contrary”. Amanatullah Khan, a local leader and witness of the incident confirmed Ms. Shethi’s claims. According to him, “they would have ended up in jails had it not been for the vigilance of the local residents who came to their rescue and raised the alarm”.

Farha Farooqui, a teacher at Jamia Millia Islamia while referring to above incidents said all these incidents have created a sense of fear and terror amongst residents of Jamia Nagar especially youth. “This must stop immediately, for the larger benefit of the community as well as India,” she said adding “as these biased approaches of security agencies will not be helpful for any good”.

Mona Das, a teacher at Delhi University and former President of JNU students’ union termed these incidents a bolt on Indian democracy. “It is the high time to come forward to resist such highhandedness of police authorities,” she appealed.

Akhalaq Ahmed of Association for Protection of Civil Rights, Gazala Jamil of Delhi School of Social Work and Mohd Ahmed of Jamaat-e-Islami Hind also spoke on the occasion. Meanwhile a similar protest against police highhandedness was also organized outside Jamia Nagar police station. The protest was jointly organized by several groups including Rashtriya Ulema Council, Welfare Party of India, All India Youth Federation and others.

(Photo by Mukul Dube)