India

Politics of fear at play in Shamli, Muzaffarnagar: NCM member

Politics of fear at play in Shamli, Muzaffarnagar: NCM member

New Delhi:With no substantial evidence of Muslim aggression against the Hindus in Kairana town of western Uttar Pradesh, it is the “politics of fear” which is at play here, National Minorities Commission member Farida Abdullah Khan said on Friday.

During a recent visit to Kairana (Shamli district) and Muzaffarnagar, Khan said the local administration in Kairana “categorically denied any Hindu-Muslim tension on the ground”, or any evidence of Hindus leaving homes due to Muslim aggression.

“Kairana has always been a Muslim-majority town. The reports that the town’s demography changed dramatically after the 2013 Muzaffarnagar riots with a lot of Muslim influx is strange,” Khan, who relinquished office on Friday, told IANS.

The National Human Rights Commission recently suggested in its report that around 30,000 Muslims had migrated to Kairana, which changed the demography of the town. It also suggested that the migrated Muslims were indulging in crime in Kairana.

“I spoke with Muzaffarnagar administration and they said that they do not know of any large-scale migration from the district to the adjoining Shamli. Movement of 30,000 people is not something that can go unnoticed,” she said.

“The Kairana administration did acknowledge that there is crime in the region. But they said there is no evidence of newly-settled Muslims, not more than a few hundred families, indulging in crime,” she added.

The NHRC in its report on the alleged exodus of Hindu families from Kairana, had observed: “At least 24 witnesses stated that the youths of the specific majority community in Kairana pass lewd/taunting remarks against the females of the specific minority community in the town.”

Since Muslims are in majority in Kairana, the majority community here implies the Muslims.

“First they (certain politicians) created a fear among the Muslims, now they are trying to foment fear among the Hindus that they are in danger from the other community. This is politics of fear they are playing,” Khan said.

She said that as per the information gathered by her through interaction with the local administration, civil society groups and the local residents, the story of migration of some families — both Hindus and Musims — from Kairana is similar to the story from any other mofussil town.

“People migrate from small towns to bigger cities in serach of better employment and work opportunities. Same is the case with Kaiarana,” she said.