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Mob in frenzy turns murderous

 A day will soon come when males will agitate for their rights, demanding an international men’s day and a set of special laws to protect not their honor or human dignity but their life itself.

Most people currentlyare busy talking about India’sdaughter, a documentary film produced by BBC on Delhi’s Nirbhaya rape case and banned by the Indian government, but very few seem to reserve time to talk about India’s son, Syed Farid Khan (also known as Sharifuddin Khan), lynched and killed in the most barbaric manner by a mob of some 5000-7000 in Dimapur, the business centre of Nagaland on March 5, 2015 for all but an alleged rape case.

Twenty eight year old Farid was first framed for rape,claims his wife who is a Sema Naga by descent. “He was dragged, militated and lynched in the most horrific, beastly and utterly barbaric manner and then alleged to bean illegal Bangladeshi migrant by the mob,the Nagaland police administration and most shockingly by the ‘so called’ mainstream media,” she said.

Farid was taken out from the Dimapur Central Jail, beaten, stripped naked, dragged up to 7 kilometers which eventually caused his death, was kept hanging upside down for hours froma clock tower, and innumerable selfies madeof a lifeless Farid and then an attempt to set him on fire made amidstsheer clapping, and uproar when the police foiled the pogrom dispersing the mob with gunshots.

Was Faridactually innocent? We cannot claim anything with certainty. The Indian criminal court is the only right authority to pass a judgment on this in due time. Fromwhatever hard and circumstantial evidences available, it appears to be an extra marital consensual sex affair which went wrong with the girl’s demands not being met. The complainant girlalso aSema Naga by descent and Farid were in a relationship for years. Both families and friends knew them well.Farid’swife is also aSemaNaga and they have a 3 year old daughter from their marriage. His wife and the complainant girl, some claim, are cousins.  

However, he was a co-accused in a rape charge, a very serious case by the term in the Indian penal code system. Farid facedarrest and was sent tojudicial custody since February24, 2015. The other accused in the girl’s FIR was AngchaChema, a local Naga boy. The case was under trialwithin thecompetent and able Indian legal system. Howdid Farid alone becomea target of the Naga mob on March 5and received a new identity that of an illegal Bangladeshi migrant? Was it because his name was Syed Farid Khan?Or was it because he was a Muslim, a Bengali speaking non-Naga? 

Nurul Islam Laskar, executive editor of the Eastern Chronicle, an English daily from Assam, puts it this way:“Give the dog a bad name and hang it, call a man a Bangladeshi and you can do anything with him.”

A large portion of the media including the national electronic media called Farid a 'Bangladeshi'. Director General of Police, Nagaland, L.L. Doungel, called him an ‘illegal Bangladeshi citizen,’ which the Nagaland Chief Minister TR Zeliang later out rightly refuted.

The facts are bare for all possible scrutiny. Sharif (Farid) hailed from a respectable family of Bosla village in Karimganj district of Assam. His father late Syed Hussain Khan who worked for the Indian Air Force (for 20 years) retired from the Air Force Station, Kumbhirgram (Cachar, Assam). Sharif's mother has been drawing family pension from IAF till date. Sharif's late brother Imanuddin Khan served in the Indian Army and took part in the Kargil War against Pakistan in 1999. He was injured in the war and succumbed to his injuries later.

Sharif's two other brothers are also presently serving in the Indian Army- Havildar Jamaluddin Khan is in the Assam Regiment, posted at Diphu and the brother Kamaluddin Khan is also with the Assam Regiment and presently posted at a location in Arunachal Pradesh.

The media houses who termed Sharif a 'Bangladeshi' certainly owe an apology to the nation and not only express their deepest regretsto his bereaved family members but also offer an unconditional appeal for reprieve from all who have been adversely affected and hurt by the incident and the unfolding of the malicious propaganda.”

Assam CM Tarun Gogoi reacted in a very swift and decisive manner. He termed Farid’s lynching and death as barbaric and utterly unacceptable. He claimed Farid to be a citizen of Assam and sent Karimganj DeputyCommissioner, Sanjiv Gohain Boruah to his grieved family on March 6, and necessarily airlifted hiscoffinfrom Dimapur on March 7 by a military chopper and handed it over to his family.

Khan was buried in Karimganj’s Bosla village at around 11 AM on Sunday, March 8. A huge turnout was reported during hid burial with former minister and Karimganj (South) MLA Siddique Ahmad, All India United Democratic Front’s regional leaders and other political and religious VIPs attending the same.

Unconfirmed medical reports from Dimapur’s Zoin Hospital, received by some media sources says that the girl was not raped, and there was no sexual harassment but of late another unconfirmed report reveals there was rape. According to a news report published in the Dainik Asomiya Pratidin, the premier Assamese daily, dated March 7, by senior journalist Ziaur Rahmanthe Superintendent of Police (SP), Dimapur, Miren Zamir confirmed that the girl was not raped. “The girl rather blackmailed the boy for Rupees 2 lakhs. He didn't pay up and arape case was filed against him,” local sources confirmed Eastern Crescent.

Moreover, there are 2 video footages from the Orient Hotel’s CCTV camera, the place where according to the girl the rape took place on theevening of March 23, on air on social media sites. One is a 32 second long clip showing the complainant girl entering the hotel alone on her own. The other is more than a 2 minute long clip where it clearly showeda man paying hotel charges, receiving a receipt and after a while he was joined by the girl and another man and then the triofinally leaving the hotel. Nowhere in the footages didthe girl appear paranoid, under pressure or in any hurry. 

Three senior officials of Dimapur, including the SP and the Central Jail Chief, were suspended on Friday and a judicial inquiry slapped on them.Following this24 others were arrested and police say more arrests are expected shortly from among the mob. 

The commoners of Assam stood united in solidarity with Farid Khan and took to the streets against his killing. 

Across the party line all political leaders from Assam, except a few from the BJP, have strongly condemned the incidence, criticized the terming of Farid as a Bangladeshi migrant for a patriotic armymen’s family and demanded immediate thorough enquiry into the matter.

Bandhs called by several political, social and business organizations received a good response with total shut downsalong with traffic remaining off the roads.

The All India United Democratic Front (AIUDF) president and Dhubri MP Maulana Badruddin Ajmal along with his party colleague and Karimganj MP Radheshyam Biswas met with several union ministers in Delhi and demanded toughest punishment for the culprits of the inhuman killing and barbarism in Dimapur. MP Ajmal said that, “It was a total failure of the law and order situation in Nagaland for which Nagaland as well as Central Government are jointly responsible”. It is a shame that Assamese, especially Bengali speaking genuine Indian citizens are harassed in the name of illegal Bangladeshi immigrants, he said. 

The AIUDF MLAs in Assam also demanded genuine compensation for the victim’s family and asked the Assam CM to ensure safety and security of all Assamese people living in Nagaland.

TRP ridden media houses must resort to responsible reporting and do away with propaganda that can foment hatred. Rape is a serious crime, unacceptable in anyway, but must be given a chance to beexamined under due process of law. Women must not misuse law. Farid Khan may or may not be a criminal but terming him an illegal Bangladeshi migrant by the propagandist media and political groups with vested interests is highly condemnable and inhumane an approach.Farid’s death has been an insult to thoseIndian Muslims of Assam who speak different Bengali dialects. It has devastatedthe extremely patriotic4 army men family, the eldest son among whom was a Kargil War martyr while his brother Farid succumbed to a wild mob attack in which the administration is no less innocent and the media that followed suit.


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M Burhanuddin Qasmi's picture

Director, Markazul Ma'arif Education & Rsearch Centre (MMERC), Mumbai.

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Assam rowers shine in spite of poor facility

13 Jun 2011 - 4:26pm | Abdul Gani

They do not have sufficient equipments to horn their skills, but with the help of sheer hard work and an undying desire to prove something a bunch of youngsters from Assam have excelled in the recently concluded National Rowing championship held in Kolkata recently. The rowers from the state have earned four medals in the 14th Sub-Junior and 15th Challenger Sprints National Championship where 15 teams from across the country took part.

Himeli Chatterjee and Anangcha Das bagged the silver medal in the Coxless Pair in sub junior girls’ category. Nafisa Sadiq won the bronze in single scull in the sub junior category. The sub junior girls’ cox four team featuring Arindita Deka, Aradhana Das, Himeli Chatterjee, Anangcha das and Nafisa Sadiq won another bronze while Jishnu Jiban Barua and Nixon J Brahma have clinched bronze in sub junior boys double scull.

“We are extremely happy of the performance of the young boys and girls in the national championship. It is only possible because of their sheer hard work and dedication towards the sports,” said Assam Boat Racing and Rowing Association (ABRRA) president A K Absar Hazarika. “Hats off to these youngsters. Going from such a poor back ground, the way they have performed is simply brilliant,” he said ruing the pathetic plight of the sports in the state. He further said that in spite of having several water bodies in the state, the sport is lagging far behind due to lack of infrastructure and proper handling by the sports authority in the state. “It’s a costly game and needed lots of care to run smoothly but in this regard we are far behind than the rest part of the country. In spite of having organized national games in the state the infrastructure are not fully utilized in a proper way,” he regretted.

“In spite of our repeated requests the sports authority pays any heed to it. The boats which were purchased to use during the national games could have easily handed over to us but that too is not happening. As a result these are getting damaged. To develop a sport the state authorities should play a vital role to move it ahead,” he further said.

Even then the players and the organizers are putting their fingers crossed for a better future of the game in the state.

“I always try to give my best and be positive whatever the scenario may be. I give more importance to the players’ fitness level so that they can perform anywhere. The problems are there but we are fighting against all the odds. I also congratulate the youngsters to perform so well outside the state practicing here with limited resources,” said Cheranjeet Phukan, one of the coaches of ABBRA.

“We are happy at our performance. But we need more facilities here to perform even better in future and to give tough contest with outside players,” said Nafisa Sadiq who won two medals.

Border sealing: All party team to Delhi

6 Jan 2009 - 3:58pm | editor
The day two of the Assam assembly's winter session decided to depute an all party delegation to New Delhi to put pressure on the Centre to ensure the sealing of the Indo-Bangla border.

Participating in the question hour, the Opposition members alleged that the government has not been doing enough to seal the porous portion of the Indo-Bangla border. In his reply, revenue minister Dr Bhumidhar Barman said the Assam government has been apprising the Centre of all these from time to time.

The House decided to rush an all party delegation to Delhi to be led by the Speaker. Earlier, the House discussed the plights of the refugees in Darrang and Udalguri districts who were rendered homeless at the height of the communal clash that rocked the two lower Assam districts.

The Opposition members alleged pathetic plights of the camp inmates but revenue minister Dr Bhimidhar Barman made it clear that the government has been taking necessary steps to help the camps run smoothly.

Plight of a hospital in Orang

15 Sep 2016 - 8:23pm | Shajid Khan

The pathetic plight of a 30 bedded hospital in Orang takes the centrestage of resentment among the local residents who are set to hit the streets demanding a slew of measures to uplift it.
Upgraded 8 years back, the Orang PHC still lacks minimum infrastructure and man power much to the major disadvantage of thousands of the people in the entire huge area.
The hospital has no assistant-superintendent, doctors, nurses and staffs forcing many local organizations to come out to raise the demands.
Manab Adhikar Sangram Samitti Udalguri district, APCU, Bodoland Journalist Association and various other organisations and conscious citizens have demanded measures to appointment doctors and staffs apart from the steps to upgrade the infrastructure.