Qasmi could have been framed

Family of arrested Bengaluru Muslim cleric says he has no terror links asks media to stop portraying so
news Friday, January 15, 2016 - 08:16

​A week after Bengaluru-based Muslim religious leader Maulana Anzar Qasmi Shah was taken away by Delhi Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS), the cleric's family members have come out strongly condemning his arrest.

Addressing the media, Islamic scholars and Qasmi’s family including his father Syed Momin Shah and his twenty-five-year old son said that the community was hurt by Qasmi’s arrest with no 'concrete evidence'.

“The FIR does not have solid evidence to prove the allegations. All his speeches have been recorded and produced by the police. Nowhere there is a hint of anything that is anti-national,” alleged Mohammed Haneef Afsar Azeezi of the Jumma Masjid on OPH Road in Bengaluru​

The Bengaluru-based cleric is suspected to have forged links with an Islamic fundamentalist terrorist organisation in Pakistan. The intelligence bureau apparently first stumbled upon Qasmi when it was tracking two of his associates Asif and Abdul Rahman from West Bengal. He was arrested for unlawful activities, which means Qasmi cannot apply for bail for six months.

Azeezi said that media investigations in the past has proven that many times people have been arrested with no stand-alone evidence behind the allegations.

The group alleged that Qasmi was being framed by someone out of vengeance.

 

Qasmi’s father, Syed Momin Shah said that he knew his son closely and believed that as a person who has attracted​ so many people through his speeches and having been so religious, there was no way he could have had any connections with terrorist groups.

“His speeches were at the most about differences between muslim communities,”said Mohammed Asgar, Qasmi’s brother-in-law.

“The process in which he was arrested is disturbing. The police should not have gone by statements of the accused unless they had some proof,” said Momin.

Asked what their next step would be, the family said they have to wait until six months after which the cleric can apply for a bail.

“We have total faith in the judiciary and will let the case take the legal course. Our only request to media is to stop projecting Qasmi as a convict when none of the allegations have been proved,”said Qasmi’s brother-in-law.

 “If any of the allegations come true, then he deserves to be treated as per law. However, my hunch suggests he is innocent,” Momin added.​

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