The Uttar Pradesh Police has registered an FIR under IPC 188/269 (Pandemic Act/lockdown violation) against several social, political and student activists in Allahabad for joining a protest against the killing of two Muslims including a 12-year-old boy in Assam’s Darrang district last week.
The complaint is filed against 8 people who are associated with different social and political outfits including Sarah Ahmad Siddiqui (Adhoc co-convener, Fraternity Movement), Avinash Mishra (PUCL), Shailesh Paswan (AISA), Sabiha Mohani (Samajwadi Party), Shaheen Fatima (Social Activist), Kamal Usri (CPIML) and an unknown person.
Speaking to The Cognate Sarah Ahmad Siddiqui said, “This is just an attempt to intimidate us and people who possess the voice of dissent, but police should know that these tactics are not going to work. They can stop us from coming out physically but they don’t have any right on our voices”.
The FIR was filed even before the protest was staged. However, the protest took place with the participation of all the organizations in the Kareli area of Allahabad on Sunday evening.
Siddiqui said, “I got a call from CO, Kareli Thana asking about people joining the protest, telling us we should not do this protest and why we are not protesting at a place allotted by the government”.
“Protest is our democratic and constitutional right and we can do it anywhere. We did our protest as per our schedule and also handed over the memorandum to Khuldabad SO addressed to the District Magistrate demanding strict action against people responsible for the brutality unleashed on civilians in Assam”, she added.
She asserted, “We can’t sit back and see ethnic cleansing of Muslims in the country. We will keep on raising our voice and keep resisting. These FIRs can’t silence us”.
The Fraternity Movement’s UP unit has released a statement condemning the action of UP Police for ‘intimidating the protestors’ and ‘trying to curb the dissent’.
“We demand the FIR be immediately quashed. We resolve to keep raising our voices against oppression and state-sponsored terrorism. We stand in solidarity with Sarah Ahmad and other activists named and unnamed”, reads the statement.
This story first appeared on thecognate.com