Guwahati: Three FIRs have been lodged in different police stations in Assam against Maulana Syed Arshad Madani, president of the Jamiat Ulema-e-Hind, for making a statement amounting to “promoting enmity between communities” in the backdrop of updating of the National Register of Citizens (NRC) in the state.
Assam DGP Mukesh Sahay who confirmed the report said that the police is examining various evidences including the original audio and video recordings of a speech that Madani had reportedly made in a seminar in New Delhi on Monday, and ‘appropriate action’ would be taken once the allegations are proved true. “We are procuring the audio and video tapes of Madani’s allegedly inflammatory speech,” DGP Sahay said.
“The police have received three FIRs, two in two different police stations in Guwahati and one in Tezpur against some comments made by the Jamiat chief which allegedly amount to promoting enmity between communities. Moreover, chief minister Sarbananda Sonowal too has asked me to take up the matter with urgency,” Assam Police director general Sahay said at a press conference here on Wednesday.
Maulana Arshad Madani along with several other politicians, political analyst and intellectuals addressed a joint press conference and meeting organized by Delhi Action committee for Assam (DACA) at Constitution Club of India, New Delhi on Monday.
Maulana Madani had said if panchayat-issued residency certificates are not considered a valid document for claiming citizenship, “lakhs” of women residents will be deprived of their nationality, “turning India into second Myanmar”. He said the problem of certificates arose after BJP-led governments came to power at the Centre and in the state.
Maulana Madani insisted that the state government strictly adheres to the Assam Accord, framed in 1985, while the issue of citizenship is being decided. As per the accord, anyone who entered Assam on or before March 24, 1971, is deemed as an Indian citizen. “The NRC should be updated based on humanity and not religion… Or else, the country will get destroyed. We don’t want to see that situation,” he said.
The ruling BJP and its ally AGP have both condemned Madani’s alleged statement. “Madani’s statement is highly provocative and communal. He is also trying to challenge the Supreme Court under whose supervision the NRC is being updated,” said BJP state general secretary Manoj Barua. AGP president Atul Bora – who is also a minister in the Sonowal government – on the other hand has described Madani as “anti-national.”
Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal said, “Elements trying to derail preparation of the NRC will be treated as enemies of the state. The government will not sit idle against such elements”.
The All India United Democratic Front (AUIDF) headed by Maulana Badruddin Ajmal however has said that section of the media had misinterpreted what Madani had said. “I have listened to the audio recording of what Madani had said. He spoke in Urdu and a section of the media has misinterpreted it,” AIUDF general secretary Aminul Islam said.