People's Democracy

(Weekly Organ of the Communist Party of India (Marxist)


No. 48

December 02, 2007

Minorities’ Forum Leader Arrested, Remanded To Police Custody


THE Kolkata police arrested Idris Ali, leader of both the Minorities’ Forum (MF), and of the minorities’ cell of the Pradesh Congress, and a self-confessedly Somen Mitra loyalist, for his role in the incitement of violence in certain areas of central Kolkata on November 21. He has been arrested also on the charge of preventing the police from doing their duty in the restoration of law-and-order. The concerned IPC sections would reveal the depth of his criminal urge.


Idris Ali was booked inter alia under IPC sections 147 (rioting), 148 (rioting with deadly weapons, 333 (causing hurt and deterring the police), and 353 (assault on police officers with criminal intent). Fittingly, officers of anti-rowdy squad of the Kolkata police it was who finally took him into custody. Idris Ali was kept in the central lock-up of Lalbazar, and then was subjected to a thorough medical check up at a city hospital. Later produced in court, he was sent to police remand until November 29.


Moments after Idris Ali had been arrested, the propagation of a tale of a particular loathsome and communal kind was attempted at, in the sensitive and mixed areas of Kolkata. The CPI(M) workers always on the vigil helped quash the rumour quickly enough, and the peace marches continued throughout the evenings.


Idris Ali is of ill-renown for his involvement in a drive of unrelenting hatred of the communists and of the Left. He has been at the centre of a number of controversies involving vicious tirades against the CPI(M). A lawyer on the side, Idris Ali has lodged a number of cases against the Left Front government on issues ranging from the unfortunate murder of a young Kolkata computer analyst to the tragic conspiracy that unfolded at Nandigram.




Involved constantly in a tussle of one-upmanship with the other fundamentalist groups for the leadership of the Bengal Muslim community, (his latest bête noire is come-lately Siddiqullah Chaudhuri, an apple of the eye of the Trinamul Congress chief), Idris Ali has always projected a shadowy fundamentalist self behind the façade of a second-rung Congress leader. His involvement in the early phase of the Kolkata violence of late was clear and present.


Having goaded the lumpen to have a free run of parts of central Kolkata, burning, looting, running riot, all in the name of religion, Idris Ali himself ran away to the safe and cosy environment of the friendly neighbourhood TV channels from the city studios of which he pontificated with as much unreason as he was able to muster, against the ‘anti-Islam frame of mind of the communists,’ and much more on the same divisive line. Now he has been arrested on IPC sections all of which are non-bailable.


Before the police would finally arrest Idris Ali, the rhetoric question on the lips of central Kolkata citizens cutting across faith and belief, outlook and point of view, was it was time he was put behind bars and the earlier the better. (B P)