Ghaziabad: 9 Men Accused of Assaulting Muslim Man Granted Bail

Eight out of the nine men accused of assaulting 70-year-old Muslim man in UP will walk out of jail on interim bail.

3 min read
The accused cut off 72-year-old Saifi’s beard, forced him to chant Jai Sri Ram, and assaulted him for four hours in Uttar Pradesh’s Loni.

All the nine men accused of assaulting 72-year old Abdul Samad Saifi in Uttar Pradesh’s Ghaziabad district have been granted interim bail and eight of them have already been released from jail, Inspector of Loni Border Police Station informed The Quint.

The accused have been granted interim bail till 17 August.

The prime accused Parvesh Gujjar will, however, remain in judicial custody as he’s also facing investigation in another criminal case, his lawyer Parvinder Nagar told the news agency PTI. 

On 5 June, a mob was caught on camera while assaulting 70-year-old Abdul Samad Saifi in UP’s Ghaziabad district. While several people claimed that the attack on 5 June, in which the assailants also chopped off Saifi’s beard, was a communally motivated hate crime, the UP Police denied the communal angle and has registered an FIR against Twitter, The Wire and several journalists for allegedly "provoking communal sentiments”.

The Ghaziabad Police claims that Gujjar and his associates assaulted Samad because he had allegedly sold them an amulet that had a “negative effect” on their families. They also said that Samad was in the business of making and selling amulets and was an earlier acquaintance of Gujjar and others.

Police Arrests Ummed Pehelwan

On June 19, Ghaziabad Police informed news agency ANI that Samajwadi Party’s Ummed Pehelwan Idrisi has been arrested near Lok Narayan Jai Prakash Hospital in Delhi.

Ummed Pehelwan Idrisi had helped the 72-year-old man in filing the complaint against the assault he was subjected to. Later, Pehelwan had said that the FIR registered in the case was not based on the original complaint filed by the elderly man.

Searches were underway for Ummed Pahalwan Idrisi in Ghaziabad who was booked by police in connection with the circulation of a “communal” video related to the assault on an elderly Muslim man.

Ghaziabad Senior Superintendent of Police Amit Kumar Pathak said the district police wanted Ummaid Pehelwan Idrisi to appear before it and record his statement in connection with the case.

The case against Idrisi was lodged at the Loni Border police station on Wednesday evening, a day after the Ghaziabad police booked Twitter, a news website, some journalists and opposition Congress politicians in a separate FIR over circulation of the video in which the elderly Muslim claimed attack by some young men who also “forced” him to chant “Jai Shri Ram”.

Filed on the complaint of a local policeman, the FIR said Idrisi had "unnecessarily" made the video – in which Abdul Shamad Saifi narrated his ordeal – with an intention to "create social disharmony" and shared it through his Facebook account.

“The Ghaziabad police wants him to join the probe and get his statement recorded. He is absconding at the moment and a search is underway to find him. We have also written to social media sites to share with us whatever information they have about him.”
SSP Pathak quoted as saying to news agency PTI

What Had Happened?

On his way to Hajipur Bheta in UP’s Ghaziabad district on the afternoon of 5 June, Abdul Samad Saifi was allegedly abducted by a young auto driver under the pretext of driving him.

Seventy-two-year-old Saifi narrated the incident as said in the video, and alleged that there were five men who abducted him, kicked him ruthlessly, beat him up, put a pistol to his head, stole the Rs 1,200 he had on him, forced him to chant Jai Sri Ram, cut his beard, made him see videos of other Muslims being attacked, and boasted that they had killed many Muslims before.

An FIR was registered by the police under Sections 342 (wrongful confinement), 323 (voluntarily causing hurt), 504 (intentionally insulting to break public peace), 506 (criminal intimidation), and 295A (deliberate malicious acts to outrage religious feelings by insulting religion or religious beliefs) of the Indian Penal Code.

While the FIR, which The Quint has a copy of, was registered on 7 June, the fifth section regarding outraging religious feelings was added later.

FIR in Loni Case, Journos Booked

After the video of a 72-year-old Muslim man, Abdul Samad Saifi, being brutally beaten up in Ghaziabad’s Loni went viral, many shared the video claiming the incident of being a communally motivated hate crime.

However, denying such allegations, the police in Uttar Pradesh’s Ghaziabad filed an FIR on Tuesday, 15 June, against nine entities including Twitter Inc and Twitter Communications India Pvt for having done nothing to prevent the video from getting viral.

The police added, “The following entities – The Wire, Rana Ayyub, Mohammad Zubair, Dr Shama Mohammed, Saba Naqvi, Maskoor Usmani, Salman Nizami – without checking the fact, started giving communal colour to the incident on Twitter and suddenly they started spreading messages to disrupt the peace and bring differences between the religious communities.”

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