Prophet row: HC grants bail to Afreen Fatima’s father in protest case

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The Allahabad High Court on Saturday granted bail to Muslim activist and Welfare Party of India leader Javed Mohammed, who was arrested after a massive protest broke out on 10 June last year in Prayagraj against derogatory remarks on Prophet Mohammed by BJP leader Nupur Sharma, reported Maktoob Media.

Despite getting bail, Javed won’t be released from jail as his bail application is pending in two other cases.

Prayagraj police arrested the 54-year-old Javed and arbitrarily demolished his house. The arrest and demolition were widely condemned by several nations and international rights groups and opposition parties in India.

While granting bail to Javed, a Bench of Justice Sameer Jain observed that “bail is a rule and jail is an exception and bail cannot be rejected for punitive purposes”.

“Applicant (Javed) does not appear to be instrumental for such violence,” the court said while observing that “it appears that due to the aggression and activeness of the applicant people of his community gathered in large number and thereafter mob committed the violence”.

Senior Advocate S F A Naqvi, who argued on behalf of Javed, told the court that allegations against his client were baseless, Indian Express reported. Naqvi said that Javed “is a social worker and he used to raise voice against atrocity and only due to this reason he was falsely implicated by the police in the present matter”.

“Javed was arrested only due to the reason that he is a whistleblower for his community and always raises voice against atrocities,” the lawyer said.

Javed’s family has been alleging that they were targeted because of their Muslim identity and active involvement in protests against injustices, reads the report.

Javed’s daughter and prominent Muslim student leader Afreen Fatima tweeted a month ago: “It has been 6 months since the unjust incarceration of Abbu. I can write about how brave he has been, anecdotes from his life. But none of it matters for we live in a state that is cruel and vicious. All that matters is that it’s been 6 months and counting.”

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