On 1st June 2020 students of Aligarh Muslim University organised a press conference on ‘Witch Hunting of Students and Anti CAA Activists’. The press conference was streaming live on a Zoom call. The conference started at 1:30 pm and ran for an hour.
The event was moderated by Abdul Wadood who is an AMU student’s leader. He started the conference by briefing about the protests happened due CAA and NRC. He also emphasised on how lots of innocent Muslim student activists are being put behind the bars for taking active part in these protests. Either Safoora Zargar, Sharjeel Imam, Farhan Zuberi or Amir Mintoee, all of them are directly arrested without any legal representation. During the conference he quoted Prashant Bhushan who is a public interest lawyer in Supreme Court as “It is a conspiracy to trap the Muslims and for this Muslims have to raise their voice against the wrongdoing”
Examining the scenario Wadood added “We have to do any possible thing to bring out these brave soldiers from jail” Event consisted of 8 speakers who were supposed to brief about the issue. Few of them were cabinet members of the university and rest of them were student activists.
The discussion was led by Salman Imtiyaz who is the president of AMUSU, he started by emphasising on how Muslims are targeted. The whole issue cropped up when BJP government introduced the amended citizenship law. As soon as the law was introduced, it led to a massive protest across India. The first protest started at the capital of the nation. Delhi witnessed how the students of Jamia Milia Islamia was thrashed by the police. Few days later, many such events started taking place in renowned universities of India including JNU. Imtiyaz pointed out that India is facing an undeclared emergency where voices of Muslims are being supressed.
It was also discussed how, student activists who are the prominent faces of these protests either in universities or at Shaheen bagh were under the radar of the government. As soon as the Covid-19 pandemic popped up, government took the advantage of the situation and arrested these student activists. The whole matter then was compared to the ‘Black Live Matter’ movement in US, where they are protesting on the streets despite the fear of coronavirus. However, being responsible citizens of India, these students stopped the protest across the country as it had the risk for the spread of the virus.
Different views and thoughts were expressed during the press conference. As someone said that now is the time to give ultimatum to the government and for others all Muslims need to unite themselves to oppose the government and its fascist propaganda.
One of the speakers pointed out that Delhi riot was a case of state sponsored terrorism where lots of innocent Muslims were slaughtered. It’s an irony that we live in a country where master mind of Delhi pogrom got free hand and a 3 months pregnant lady is put behind bars during the pandemic. One of the major roles is played by the fourth pillar of democracy, as media these days believe in propaganda instead of supporting the truth.
During this time of pandemic, the government’s main agenda should be helping the abject sufferers of this crisis, the migrant labourers. However, the bizarre part is even pandemic took a form of communal propaganda. The media sensationalises the ‘Tabligi Jamaat’ incident so much that eventually hatred rolled out for Muslims. Ansab Amir who is an AMU student leader said, “Students of Muslim universities and Muslims students should know the difference between right and wrong and should always raise their voice.”
All the members in the event agreed to the points stated above and agreed to raising their voice with unity against the witch hunting of Muslim student activists.
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