Terror Arrests: Bihar civil group writes to Chief Justice of India

By Mudassir Rizwan, TwoCircles.net,

Patna: A civil rights group from Bihar has sought Chief Justice of India’s intervention for high-level probe into the murder of Mohammad Qateel Siddiqui in high-security Pune jail. Condemning the custodial murder, People’s Initiative, in its memorandum to CJI, has also highlighted the brazen violation by ATS teams of the Supreme Court guidelines about arrest.

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L-R: Abdus Salam (father of Kafeel Akhtar), civil rights activist Nayyer Fatmi, civil activist Kanchan Bala, Amrah Jalal (mother of Fasih Mahmood), Shakeel Siddiqui (brother of Qateel Siddiqui) and civil activist and journalist from Darbhanga Shakeel Ahmad Salafi

“Qateel Siddiqui of Darbhanga was killed in judicial custody in Pune jail on 8th June 2012. The murder has made the role of jail administration and police suspicious. As the he was murdered in judicial custody, so we demand the Chief Justice of India to order a high-level inquiry into this murder,” the group demanded in the memorandum which was released to the media at a program at IMA Hall in Patna on Monday.

On the occasion, the group released a report of its fact-finding team which recently visited Darbhanga and adjoining areas from where over one dozen youths have been picked in terror cases since November 2011.

“In the name of counterterrorism, ATS has been violating the rules and guidelines of Supreme Court while arresting youths from Darbhanga and Madhubani, so we demand appropriate action in this regard,” the group said.

The civil activists demanded bail for the accused against whom police have not filed charge sheet even after the stipulated time and they are in jail for a long time.

The fact-finding team narrating their observation about the area said that due to arrests fear has enveloped the entire area of Darbhanga and Madhubani. ATS is not working as a law enforcement agency, rather it is working as a kidnapping gang. The team also revealed that some boys in Darbhanga are being threatened by Maharashtra ATS and Karnataka ATS. They are asked to come to Mumbai without telling anyone.

People’s Initiative had also invited family members of the arrested youths to tell their story to the media. Amrah Jalal, mother of Fasih Mahmood, Shakeel Siddiqui, brother of Qateel Siddiqui and Abdus Salam, father of Kafeel Akhtar told their story. They also talked to TCN.

The program was attended by eminent civil and human rights activists and community leaders. They included Kanchan Bala, Mahender, Nayyer Fatmi, Jitendra, Satnarayan Madan, Adv. Manilal, Arshad Ajmal, Nayyaruzzaman (state president of Jamaat Islami) and Anish Ankur.

The civil group announced to organize a dharna (sit-in) against the illegal arrests on 24th June at Kargil Chowk, Gandhi Maidan in Patna.