We at Organiser have kept bringing the reported incidents of Islamic Vigilantism from different states of India. By Islam Vigilantism we mean, Muslim men hunting in groups looking for burqa-clad women with Hindu men. No matter what they are out for, these men will block and shoot the act of harassment, asking intriguing questions with the women, passing slurs of Kaffir and Jannat-Jahannum etc. All of this is to send a moral lesson that they are guarding their women, however, it looks otherwise.
Here are two cases from two districts of Uttar Pradesh where the police have arrested these vigilantes. They have been booked under various sections of the IPC including assault, rioting and others.
The Bijnor Case
A First Information Report (number–119/2023) was registered at the Sherkot police station on May 24 against Muslim men, after videos of them harassing a burqa-clad woman went viral on Twitter.
These accused have been identified as Mohammad Altmas, Fardeen, Anas, Sultan, Mohammad Amir and others. All these accused have been booked under IPC sections 147 (rioting), 352 (assault), 341 (wrongful restraint), 504 (intentionally insulting), 506 (criminal intimidation) and section 67 of the IT Act.
In a press note released by the Bijnor police on May 24 from their official Twitter account, the police stated that during the interrogation the accused admitted that they hunt for Muslim women in groups, as soon as they track them with men from different religions they call their parents.
Organiser also accessed the viral video in which the vigilantes can be seen harassing the Hindu man and the victim Muslim woman. In the viral clip, vigilantes can be seen stopping a bike after spotting two Burqa-clad women. They question the man, ask him to show his Aadhar card and only allow them to pass after the women assured them that the man driving the bike is their brother.
The Moradabad Case
On May 22, a video of men harassing women in a Burqa found with a Hindu man went viral on social media. In the said video, the accused Islamists can be seen passing comments like “Tujhe mai thane lekar chalunga, apne baap ka number de” (I will take you to the police station, give me your father’s number). He added further, tell me your uncle’s name, call your brother, call your mother.
The woman in the burqa asked, what was their problem?
To which the vigilantes responded, “Tu Musalman hai, Kis naam ki Musalman hai, Tujhe Kabr me nahi jana? Musalman ladke mar gaye?” (Are you a Muslim? Don’t you wish to go to the grave one day? Are all Muslim men dead?)
The woman starts crying towards the end of the clip as all of this is happening in the market.
A First Information Report (number–153/2023) was registered at the Bhojpur police station on May 21 by the victim woman Zubaida Khatun (name changed to protect the identity of the woman).
Notably, after the complaint the police arrested one of the accused out of three. As per the FIR, the accused have been identified as Shan-e-Alam, Jan-e-Alam, Hafiz & others.
All of them have been booked under IPC sections 354A (making sexually coloured remarks), 323 (voluntarily causing hurt), 504 (intentionally insult) and 506 (criminal intimidation).
In her complaint, the victim told the police that, while she was returning from the market after shopping she met a man, native to her colony, so she took a lift from him to home. It was then, the shopkeeper Shan-e-Alam and two others started harassing them, soon a mob assembled, they tried touching her inappropriately and also thrashed the Hindu man.
The Moradabad police arrested one of the accused named in the FIR.
On May 16, Organiser reported a similar incident from the Muzaffarnagar district of Uttar Pradesh. The victim Hindu man had to file a police complaint against the vigilantes, as they tracked him to his house, and threatened him with dire consequences, only because he took his classmate to the market for college farewell shopping.
Cases like these are getting reported almost every day. This calls for strong administrative action or else, this harassment in the name of protecting daughters and sisters or moral policing will continue.