(Weekly Organ of the Communist Party of India (Marxist)
March 03, 2013
‘Muslim Youths are Vulnerable to Arrest Today’
ON February 26, CPI(M) leader Basudeb Acharia raised in Lok Sabha the issue of indiscriminate arrest of Muslim youths in various parts of the country. Referring to the statement made by the home minister on the issue, Acharia said the statement was a cavalier one. He said, “There has been miscarriage of justice to scores of Muslim youths who were all being arrested and charged in cases related to terror attacks in different parts of the country. In some cases, these young men have been incarcerated for more than 10 to 15 years. They had to stay in jail and after 10 to 15 years, they were acquitted by the courts.” Such unlawful arrests are taking place everyday, he stressed.
The CPI(M) member said these Muslim youths have become vulnerable targets today. Though the minister said the government does not maintain any record about it, the member said he had a list of 22 youths who were arrested in different parts of the country. He asked one and all to just imagine what would happen to a young man’s family or to his life if he was arrested on concocted charges and has to spend 15 years in jail. Terming it as a very serious matter, Acharia wanted to know whether the government was contemplating any rehabilitation and resettlement of such youths and their families. In some cases the investigating agency was indicted by the court, he reminded.
In this regard, Acharia pointed out that there are no safeguards in Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) and that its draconian provisions needed to be amended in order to give protection to these youths.
The member also wanted to know whether the government has taken any action against investigating agencies for having harassed the youths, particularly Muslim youths, and implicated them in false cases, after they were found innocent.
He also asked why the government could not constitute a special court which would look into such cases in a time-bound manner.