Pune, July 14: Muslim organizations and civil society groups across Maharashtra state in Western India are demanding a strict law to counter mob lynching and attacks on minority groups on the lines of legislation to prevent atrocities against the Dalits or former “untouchables,” reports P.K.Balachandran in Daily Express.
Demanding an act like the Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe Prevention [Atrocities Act], the groups, including Muslim and Dalit organizations, have already led three “Aman” or peace rallies in Pune, Latur and Solapur, Indian media report.
The SC/ST Act has saved Dalits’ lives, and property and even personal dignity, on several occasions in all parts of India because of the stiff penalties it provides for. It’s one reason why high caste Hindu do not insult Dalits as before.
Another “Aman” one is scheduled to be held on July 15 in Pune. Incidentally Pune happens to a hotbed of Hindu extremist nationalism.
On Wednesday the rally at Solapur saw around 500 people, from different walks of life, participate. They ended the march at the Collector’s office, handing a letter to the district collector demanding the formulation of a law that protected Muslims.
One of the brains behind the Aman rally in Solapur is the father of Mohsin Sadiq Shaikh – who was beaten to death by a Hindu group in 2014.
“My son Mohsin was brutally lynched to death in June 2014 by right wing organizations because he had a beard,” said Shaikh. “The murder took place in Pune soon after the Narendra Modi government came to power.”
Seventeen out of the 21 accused who were arrested have gotten bail from the court till now if Muslims are protected by the act like Prevention of Atrocities Act, the killers of my son wouldn’t have been able to roam scot-free.”
(The featured image at the top shows Indian Muslims protecting against the ease with which certain extremists commit atrocities against them)