May 19, 2021
Asif Khan was tortured to death by a gang of goons in a village in the Mewat region of Haryana on Sunday.
Muslim Majlis-e-Mashawarat calls the murder ‘a sad story which continues to play even during pandemic’
Zafar Aafaq | Clarion India
NEW DELHI — The murder of a Muslim youth in Nuh, Haryana, by a gang of goons has evoked massive outrage on social media. Rights activists and Muslim community leaders are specially furious over hate crimes being perpetrated against ordinary Muslims even as the nation is struggling to deal with Covid-19 pandemic.
As the news of Asif Khan’s death broke, a campaign for justice under the hashtag #JusticeForAsif was started on Twitter with people expressing outrage at how people are still being mobilised to attack Muslims even as the country is battling with the worst health crises in the form of a second wave of Coronavirus which continues to consume thousands of lives daily.
Asif was tortured to death by a gang of goons allegedly from Gujjar community in a village in the Mewat region of Haryana on Sunday. The family of the victim termed it a case of lynching and hate crime.
Naved Hamid, the head of All India Muslim Majlis-e-Mashawarat, an amalgam of Muslim organisations, called the murder “a sad story which continues to play even during pandemic when the whole humanity is facing the challenge of deadly coronavirus.”
He termed the murder of Asif in in Nuh “an unfortunate incident” which he said “reminds us” of the need to have “a strong deterrent to the hate violence in the form of mob lynching.”
Hamid accused the government of ignoring the demands of activists and Muslim leaders for an anti-lynching legislation.
Meanwhile, in Nuh, the local MLA, Aftaab Ahmad, condemned the murder but he fell short of calling it a communal incident. He said the FIR against the accused does not point to communal angle.
But, Hasan Metwati, a social activist, said that it is clearly a hate crime as the family has told the media that the victim and Rashid were abused for their religious identity during the attack.
Harsh Mander, a prominent human rights defender, said as the country was under lockdown facing Covid-19 it was believed the “social project” of mob violence against Muslims had taken a pause but “incidents like this one in Nuh, Haryana, tell us that these things are difficult to be stopped once they are encouraged and allowed”.
Mander also pointed out that in cases of mob violence against Muslims police not only plays down the hate crime but also blame the victim.
He said mob violence in the form of lynching is a political and social crime which is in vogue since 2016-17 with a purpose to instill fear in the Muslim community. “It was a social project of BJP and RSS right after 2014 when they ascended to power to marginalise the Muslims politically and socially.”