New Delhi/ Hyderabad: Encounter of eight SIMI activists in Bhopal on Monday has become suspicious after appearance of several video clips showing the Madhya Pradesh police firing at the alleged SIMI activists from point blank range.
Jurists, political and community leaders have questioned the encounter involving the eight SIMI activists who had allegedly fled the Bhopal Central Jail after killing a guard and injuring two others. Digvijay Singh was the first leader to raise suspicion at the encounter saying that he smelled something fishy in the whole encounter saga.
Human rights activists too have condemned the alleged killing of the under-trials about whom a lawyer said that the case was progressing in the favor of the eight accused. Vidya Bhusha Rawat a Delhi based human rights activist in a Facebook post said, “The outrageous killings of eight under trial or accused by the Madhya Pradesh police raise serious doubts about the intension of Hindutva government to work on developmental agenda. When you get votes to divide people, by spreading lies based on emotions and one community need be projected villain and obstacle by all means then we must say these are most difficult times since independence, much worse than emergency imposed by Indira Gandhi in 1975”.
He said that he doesn’t support SIMI’s pan-Islamic theories, but cannot remain silent on such extra judicial killings. “None support the Islamic theocratic ideas of SIMI but anyone who is arrested need fair trial? You can not decide at CMO or Police headquarters as who is a culprit…The way VYAPAM hero Shivraj Singh Chauhan spoke of ‘relief’ is shocking to say the least. The Sangh leaders want to use every opportunity for a dog fight. This seems to be inspired by Israel but ask anyone both Israel and Singapore can’t be our role model”.
Read more on Bhopal SIMI encounter
Meanwhile Majlis Ittehadul Muslimeen (MIM) President and Hyderabad MP Asaduddin Owaisi has condemned the killing and called it fake. Speaking to mediapersons, Owaisi said it was “surprising” that eight undertrial prisoners had escaped from the Central Prison in Bhopal which has sophisticated security systems in place.
The MIM supremo said the contradictory statements by Madhya Pradesh home minister Bhoopendra Singh Thakur and the police on the encounter created doubts about the encounter. He said as per the statement of the home minister, the fugitives were armed with spoons but the Anti-Terrorist Squad was claiming that the fugitives had weapons. If the fugitives had only spoons the ATS could have easily overpowered and arrested them, Mr Owaisi said.
Owaisi video clip
Asaduddin Owaisi pointed out that the SIMI activists were wearing watches and belts which were banned in jails and that these articles were not given to undertrials. He said that an inquiry by an apex court judge was necessary to unravel the truth behind the entire escape and their subsequent killing in an encounter. He suggested that all terror-related cases be dealt in a time-bound manner.