By Anand Singh
New Delhi, Dec 17 (IANS) As student protests over the controversial Citizenship Amendment Act in Jamia Millia Islamia entered the fourth day on Tuesday, Imams of local mosques came out in favour of the students condemning the police action. They also demanded answers from Union Home Minister Amit Shah over the issue.
Mohammad Yakub, Imam of Khalliullah mosque at Batla House, told IANS: “Today the police arrested 10 persons, who were not part of the university for the violence and rioting on Sunday. Now the police should tell us why those people have been arrested.”
He said: “Police should tell why they beat the students, who were studying silently in the library and even girls were not spared.”
Attacking Shah, Mohammad Yakub said that the question needed to be asked as one would like to know “what were the orders”.
“Amit Shah must answer what orders he gave to the police against the students who were protesting peacefully?”, he questioned.
“Shah must ask the police officials why they assaulted the students who were studying in library — as Delhi Police comes under Home Ministry.”
Imam’s remarks came after the Delhi Police arrested 10 persons for arson and violence and for torching of the buses.
According to the police, the arrested accused were not from the Jamia Millia Islamia and were anti-social elements.
On Sunday, the protest took a violent turn as five buses were torched. However, the Jamia Millia students refuted the claims that students were involved in violent protests.
Faraz Khan, a student pursuing Masters degree at the varsity who was also injured, said, “The answers about the arrests will be given by the Home Ministry because police comes under them. And the biggest question that arises is why the university, which is considered a neutral place, was targeted.”
Khan further stressed that education is a constitutional right and Jamia Millia is a place from where the Boycott India movement started in 1920, the police forces never entered the campus since then.
“Who allowed police to fire teargas shells in library where we were studying peacefully and have nothing to do with the protests going outside the campus?” he asked.
“The police ruined the history of Jamia which has always stood for the pluralism of the country,” he added.
Another Imam told IANS: “Students have our support. B.R. Ambedkar’s ideal of giving respect to every religion is now being subverted.”
“And now by bringing the CAA and National Registrar of citizens, the government is diluting the Indian Constitution and are destroying the soul of India which has unity in diversity,” he said.
He further demanded that an inquiry be conducted into the incident.
(Anand Singh can be contacted at [email protected])