"Communal Riots Stem from Religious Appeasement," says Bareilly Sessions Court

Mainstream
11-Mar-2024
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A Bareilly sessions court, while summoning Muslim cleric Maulana Tauqeer Razam in connection with the 2010 Bareilly riots, criticized India's political landscape, attributing communal riots to the appeasement of a particular religious community. Additional Sessions Judge Ravi Kumar Diwakar emphasized the need to avoid appeasement, asserting its contribution to rising tensions. The court ordered Razam to appear on March 11, noting that he appeared to be the mastermind behind the communal violence.

Judge Diwakar praised Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, stating that his leadership exemplified a "Philosopher King," a concept from Plato's Republic. The judge highlighted Adityanath's commitment, sacrifice, and dedication to the state, emphasizing the positive results of having a religious person in a position of power.

The court's observation on communal riots resonated with its concern about delayed justice in India, providing an incentive for rioters who perceive a low risk of punishment. Judge Diwakar remarked on the prevailing fear in society due to the sluggish legal process and noted that his earlier orders in the Gyanvapi Masjid dispute had led to threats from a Muslim organization. The judge expressed disappointment over the lack of arrests in connection with the threats.

In the 2010 Bareilly riots case, the court questioned the absence of Maulana Tauqeer Raza Khan in the initial chargesheet, suggesting a failure of duty by police officers and government officials. The cleric is accused of delivering an inflammatory speech that allegedly incited the riots. The judge emphasized the importance of summoning Khan for trial, finding grounds "sufficient in the interest of justice."

The court's stance reflects broader concerns about the impact of religious appeasement on communal harmony and calls for a balanced approach in political and legal spheres. The summoning of Maulana Tauqeer Raza Khan underscores the judiciary's commitment to addressing the root causes of communal tensions and ensuring accountability for those involved in inciting violence.

Author: Anushka Taraniya

News Writer, MIT ADT University