Protest Follows Arrests: Midnight drama at Jamia Nagar police station again
By Ejaz Ahmed for IndiaTomorrow.net,
New Delhi, 19 July 2014: After a lull of four months, Jamia Nagar area of the national capital was on its feet again Friday night. More than 150 people were gheraoing the local police station till midnight demanding release of the three persons who were arrested around 9 pm today after they were called to the police station for questioning in regard with some controversial political posters.
The three persons Dilip Pandey, Jawed and Ram Jha – all members of Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) – were arrested for allegedly hurting religious sentiments and bringing up objectionable posters in Jamia Nagar area in last few days. However, top AAP leaders who rushed to the police station after the news of arrest spread, said the three were falsely implicated for political reason. Meanwhile, Amanatullah Khan, a local leader and member of AAP, came up to the public and police to claim responsibility for the posters. Interestingly, the police have not touched him so far.
Mr. Khan had got posters posted on walls, distributed handbills and installed some hoardings at flying locations of the area, accusing three Muslim Members of Delhi Assembly - Asif Mohammad Khan of Okhla, Chaudhary Mateen of Seelampur and Hasan Ahmed of Mustafabad - of playing with the sentiments of Muslims by “deciding to form a separate front to support BJP in government formation in Delhi.”
“Traitors of the community have joined hands with killers of Muslims
Asif Mohammad, Mateen Chaudhary, Hasan Ahmed. These three Congress MLAs have connived with RSS and are helping BJP to form government in Delhi.
We appeal to all Muslims to gherao their houses after Iftar on 16 July,” read the poster written in Urdu.
In last few days, political activity to form government in Delhi has got intensified. The assembly was suspended earlier this year following AAP leader and chief minister Arvind Kejriwal resigned over Lokpal issue. No party had got clear majority in the assembly poll held in Dec 2013. AAP had formed the government with support of Congress.
Soon after the objectionable hoardings and posters came up, Congress lawmaker Asif Khan registered a complaint with Jamia Nagar police station on July 16. The poster had called people to gherao the houses of three Muslim MLAs on the same day.
Notably, Amanatullah Khan has confessed before the police that he is behind the controversial move.
“The decision of these legislators to support BJP hurt my sentiments. As a Muslim it was my moral duty to make voters aware that their elected representatives are backstabbing them. I got the posters designed with Jawed's help. I mailed one of its copies to Pandey to inform him that it was my personal decision and I will bear the whole expenses. The party has nothing to do it,” Amanatullah told IndiaTomorrow.net outside the police station.
AAP has termed the arrests of its three leaders a political conspiracy hatched by BJP. “We have nothing to do with the controversial posters. The man (Amanatullah) who has done this has accepted his crime. Despite that our secretary (Dilip Pandey) and two workers have been arrested. This is nothing but concerted effort to harass us,” AAP leader and former TV journalist Ashutosh told IndiaTomorrow.net.
Justifying the arrest, however, the police said they had found a copy of the poster in Pandey’s laptop.
“A copy of the poster was found in Pandey’s laptop. It was in fact CC to him by Amanatullah. We have booked the three AAP leaders under section 153 and 153 (A) of the IPC,” said Pankaj Singh, Station House Officer of Jamia Nagar.
When asked why the police did not pick Amanatullah who had confessed to his crime in a written statement to the police, the SHO dodged the direct question.
At present, the trio is being interrogated and we will produce them before Saket court tomorrow (Saturday), said the SHO.
It is learnt that the posters were designed with the help of Jawed, who manages AAP’s social media and one of its copies was emailed to Pandey.
Questioning the arrest of AAP leaders, Amanatullah Khan said he had given a written confession, a copy of which is available with IndiaTomorrow.net, to the police after the complaint was filed.
“When I have already claimed the responsibility, why AAP leaders were picked up,” asked Amanatullah.
A large number of people led by AAP leaders Manish Sisodia, Sanjay Singh, and Ashutosh gheraoed Jamia Nagar police station and raised slogans against Delhi Police.
The last such incident – arrest leading to protest demonstration in the area – had occurred on 23 March this year when two youths were picked in an alleged terror case. Both were released later that day.