The post-Godhra riots were projected as anti-Muslim riots by the Indian ‘national’ English media, akin to the anti-Sikh riots witnessed in 1984 in New Delhi and elsewhere. It was reported as if the riots were nothing but a systematic targeting of the Muslims in which only Muslims were attacked and killed. That is to say, the media reported as if the riots were one-sided with only the Muslims suffering. This was deliberate, (mind the word deliberate) mischief on the part of the biased English media. In this chapter, let us see the truth of the Gujarat riots, the other side of the coin- attacks on Hindus. As per the police records, some 157 riots in Gujarat after 3rd March 2002 were started by Muslims.
(Source: Article by Francis Gautier on www.rediff.com dated 11 March 2003)
As per figures given by the UPA government, comprising anti-BJP parties, anti-Narendra Modi people, inside Parliament on 11 May 2005 in a WRITTEN REPLY, a total of 790 Muslims and 254 Hindus were killed in the riots of 2002 in Gujarat. Naturally, the question arises- who killed these 254 Hindus in Gujarat?
Now- the horrific massacre in Godhra happened on 27 February. On 28 February there was large-scale retaliation from the Hindus. But on 1st March, the second day of the riots, the Muslim counterattack began. The Hindu reported on 2nd March 2002-
“But unlike Thursday (i.e. Feb 28) when one community was entirely at the receiving end, the minority backlash (on 1st March, Friday) caused further worsening of the situation.
Police presence had little impact on the two communities pelting stones at each other in Bapunagar, Gomtipur, Dariapur, Shahpur, Naroda and other areas from where incidents of firing had been reported. But there were no reports of casualty. Pitched battle was continuing between the two communities late in the evening.
The official sources said timely arrival of the police foiled a retaliatory attempt to break into a prominent temple in Jamalpur locality in the walled city.”
The Indian Express reported on 2nd March 2002: “(On 1 March) Tension escalated in the walled city areas just before the Friday prayers. There were violent clashes between mobs in Jamalpur, Bapunagar, and Rakhial.” Clearly Muslims were on the offensive. And The Times of India also reported the same day: “There were signs of retaliation in areas like Juhapura, Kalupur, Dariapur and Shahpur…” This clears all possible doubts.
This clearly shows that there was a Muslim backlash. What happened on the second day of the riots in Ahmedabad was ‘pitched battles’ between Hindus and Muslims, and Muslims were also pelting stones at Hindus. Muslims attacked a prominent temple in Jamalpur in Ahmedabad. The tragedy is that even the awakened Hindus believe that the Hindus were in control for 3 days. Even S K Modi in his book- “Godhra: The Missing Rage” has written that ‘Hindus went berserk for 72 hours though violence on March 1 was much less as compared to 28 February’. But the truth is that Hindus went berserk only for 1 day, i.e. 28 February. The next 2 days also they attacked Muslims, but Muslims too attacked Hindus.
The India Today magazine also says in its issue of 11 March 2002, “(On February 28) In Ahmedabad’s Bapunagar area, a township named after Mahatma Gandhi, two groups of over two thousand each fought one other. Both were armed with swords, sticks and firearms. The casualty is not known.” This was on February 28, just one day after Godhra. When the media was painting distorted and completely false pictures of one-sided atrocities against Muslims, India Today recorded that, as many as two thousand Muslims were fighting with equal number of Hindus in Bapunagar area.
Months later, www.rediff.com (16 September 2003) reported
“Gujarat riots probe: ‘Muslims attacked Hindus’
A woman on Tuesday alleged before the two-member Nanavati Commission that an armed mob of Muslims, led by a Congress councillor, attacked Hindus in Bapunagar area in Ahmedabad during the post-Godhra riots.
“On the day of the VHP-sponsored bandh (i.e.28 February 2002), armed Muslim men had stormed our locality and some of them even stripped and said: Kill the Hindu eunuchs. Send your mothers and sisters,” Sudha Patel, a resident of Patelnagar, told the panel probing the post-Godhra violence in Gujarat.
“They gorged the eyes of a youth with swords and repeatedly crushed him under their truck till he died, they then stripped and made obscene gestures at Hindus,” she alleged.
Patel told Justice G T Nanavati (retd) and Justice K G Shah (retd) that though all persons in the mob had masked their faces, she managed to recognise the councillor, Taufeeq Khan Pathan, and his son, Zulfi, on March one.
She alleged that the mob beheaded a local mendicant, who tried to pacify them, in front of her. “They later hung his head displaying it to the locals, saying: We have chopped off your mendicant,” she alleged.
She said terror still reigns in the minds of children in Patelnagar and sought protection from anti- social elements.
Two other majority community members alleged that Muslims of the area were trying to purchase their properties. “I had to sell my house on two occasions,” one Mulji Patel told the commission.”
What does this indicate? India Today’s report in its issue of 11 March 2002 gave enough indications of the role of Muslims in rioting. In Bapunagar, Muslims instigated the riots and attacked the Hindus as early as 28 February 2002. The testimony of these witnesses clearly confirms this.
There was retaliation in Gujarat after the Godhra massacre but it lasted just three days. This retaliation was also reduced progressively in the first three days. And even in these days, in many cases Muslims were equally on the offensive. But after the first three days, most of the riots which occurred were instigated by Muslims in which Hindus and Muslims both suffered.
Even in the first three days, Hindus weren’t in complete control. As India Today reported, on February 28 itself two groups of over two thousand each fought one other. This clearly shows that Muslims too were rioting.
The following is the report of “Human Rights Watch”, an organization that anyone can accuse of having a bias against the Hindus. But even such a biased organization gave the following report:
“Mahajan No Vando, Jamalpur
Human Rights Watch visited Mahajan No Vando, a fortified Hindu residential area situated within the Muslim dominated area of Jamalpur, on March 23. Mahajan No Vando was the site of a retaliatory attack by Muslims on March 1.
According to residents, approximately twenty-five people were injured in the attacks and at least five homes were completely destroyed. Residents closer to the periphery of the fortified compound and its entrance also suffered extensive property damage. Muslim residents attacked the compound from the higher Muslim-owned buildings that surrounded it using light bulbs filled with acid, petrol and crude bombs, and bottles filled with kerosene and set some Hindu-owned houses on fire. According to the residents, who had collected and saved the remnants of what was thrown in and showed them to Human Rights Watch, “There was acid in the glass bottles and in the light bulbs that were thrown in. They used solvent petrol, kerosene, and acid. They filled some Pepsi bottles with them.”
Like many Muslim victims of attacks, the Hindu residents of Mahajan No Vando were surprised at the overnight animosity of their neighbors. One resident told Human Rights Watch: “There were no problems before February 27. On the 28th, the VHP declared all of Gujarat closed. We didn’t attack anyone. We are all poor people, we live on our labor.”
The appointed head of the community described the method of attack:
On March 1, at around 2:15 p.m. they surrounded us. There were so many people you couldn’t count them. They attacked us from all sides. There was a row of twenty-four houses on the periphery of the vando [courtyard] and they burnt them all using petrol. Five or six were completely destroyed but we saved some using water. They also burned other homes and tried to break down the houses and enter. This went on for three-and-a-half hours. The police were few and couldn’t really do much so they left. We are trapped here. We haven’t left here since then. Some organizations are helping us. The VHP and RSS have helped us a bit as well. We are worried that once the protection lifts at the end of the month, what will happen to us? We cannot leave for work because it is difficult to come back after 6:30 p.m. No one was killed in this area but some were injured. NGO doctors also came.
A resident named Harki Bhen added:
Kerosene bottles were thrown in through the roof. They threw it through the windows and the openings in the walls. We called the police thousands of times but they told us, “Sir is out”. In the morning the mosques began announcing that Islam was in danger, that there was poison in the milk. This is their code word. We are the only Hindus here, poison here means us. The rioting lasted between 2:15 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. First they destroyed the police stall outside. At 11:00 p.m. two police people too came to us. We had to give them security.
Kankubhen Kanjibhai lives in the first home on the left next to the colony gates, where the attackers first started to force their way into the area. “Everything was burned, clothes, dishes, everything. I only have left what I am wearing.” Her one-room house was completely charred. A few houses down, a Hindu shrine had also been destroyed.
A very elderly and frail woman called Ukibhen Sawaji told us: “I was sitting inside my home and everything started burning. They jumped in; they looted us also. They took our dishes and our bedding that we had kept for the dowry.” Seven-year-old Bharat Rameshbhai showed us the raw exposed skin that covered his right arm: “They threw bottles down into our home, I was inside the house. The house started burning.” Resident D. R. Rathod whose home was partly damaged in the attacks said, “Just like the train was burning, that same way our homes burned too.”
When asked about police response during the attacks, Human Rights Watch was told:
After 5:30 p.m., the brigadier came in. The Rapid Action Force and the military said, “We got no message to come here. We have been close by for seven hours but got no message that there was any problem here.” The police said, “We are on our way.” They cut off our phones from the outside. When the police arrived they threw tear gas inside here.
A strong police presence outside the colony that included several members of the Border Security Force (BSF) was helping to prevent further attacks. But residents feared what would happen once the BSF protection was lifted. While they were frustrated with the pace of police investigations, they noted that the police filed the complaints and even sent an acid bottle to be lab tested. One resident told us:
There are twelve to thirteen people stationed outside. But they will leave on March 30. We don’t know what will happen after that. After the first incident, another acid bottle was thrown in around March 15. Nothing has happened since then. The police took the acid bottle and sent it to the lab. We are working with the Gaikwaud police station. We have filed complaints with the police. The police noted everything down but there is no combing of the areas.
Two members of the Ahmedabad Home Guard who were stationed at Jamalpur even prior to the attacks entered the colony during Human Rights Watch’s investigation. They encouraged us to take more photos, carefully note down all the damage and visit each and every damaged home to talk to the resident. Their behavior stood in sharp contrast to that of police stationed near sites of destruction of Muslim homes, such as Naroda Patia, where a member of Gujarat intelligence worked diligently to note the comings and goings of those viewing the damage interviewing remaining residents.
When asked where they were during the attack one noted: “The whole city was in a storm, but this incident was the worst incident of Jamalpur. Everywhere else there was just a little bit of stone throwing. These people cannot sleep, they are afraid that someone will come again.”
On March 6, Chief Minister Narendra Modi visited Mahajan No Vando and according to the residents told them, “You will be taken care of.” Still, the residents claim that no arrests have been made.”
And this was on 1st March 2002, when the anti-Muslim riots were supposed to be going on in the state. They were. But this incidence, quoted by an organization as anti-Hindu as the Human Rights Watch, really blasts all the myths created by the media.
India Today’s reports on this issue help to a large extent to blast these media-concocted myths of the Gujarat riots. That India Today too rationalized Godhra on some grounds of flimsy ‘provocations’ in its issue dated 11 March 2002 is another thing. It called the Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi as an ‘Untouchable’. It too targeted Narendra Modi for the Gujarat riots and has called the Gujarat riots as a ‘massacre of Muslims’ ever after the riots. Its issue of 18 March 2002 dealing with the riots reported as if Muslims were ‘slaughtered’ in Gujarat in the first three days, ignoring all attacks on Hindus by Muslims on 1st and 2nd March. It also falsely reported the ‘pregnant woman womb’ story. But many of its reports at the time of the riots really help us to understand the media’s lies on the issue.
In between, ‘national’ English newspapers with a mass circulation, such as The Times of India and The Indian Express, who were in the forefront of attacks on BJP and Narendra Modi during the riots and have continued their tirade ever since, and continue to publish articles and editorials on the Gujarat riots with complete lies, also let slip in bits and pieces of the truth, during the time of the riots in Gujarat.
The following is what Uday Mahurkar writes for weekly India Today in the weekly’s issue dated 15 April 2002:
“On March 13, the Supreme Court’s ruling banning any religious activity in Ayodhya proved a psychological setback to the Vishwa Hindu Parishad and its affiliates. It was also the day when some people in the walled city of Ahmedabad burst crackers in celebration and unfurled banners saying-“You darkened our skies. We will spill your blood on the streets.”
…The next few days saw mayhem. In Ahmedabad, violence broke out on March 17 when Dalits in Danilimda area were attacked by Muslims. On March 19, it was Modasa, a town in Sabarkantha district. A police officer’s son was stabbed and two communities went berserk. A local LIC building was attacked during office hours.
The stories only got more macabre. In Himmatnagar, a young man who went to a Muslim-dominated area to do business was found dead, with his eyes gauged out. In Bharuch the murder of a Muslim youth led to mass violence. Next, the Sindhi market and Bhanderi Pole areas of Ahmedabad, hitherto calm, were attacked by mobs.
This phase, really, was one of Muslim mobs attacking Hindus.
… Take Umreth, a little town in Anand district that had practically never witnessed communal violence. This year it did and when a local BJP leader Vishnu Patel tried to pacify a Hindu crowd, it turned on him.
…Other than inefficiency, the authorities face some genuine problems in trying to arrest the culprits. Combing operations in Muslim-dominated areas have been rendered difficult. In Juhapura, just outside Ahmedabad, residents (i.e. Muslims) cut the power lines and gathered mobs of human obstacles when the army arrived to conduct search operations at night. This experience was by no means unique, it was repeated in areas like Kalupur and Gomtipur (all Muslim). Locals explained it as “spontaneous”, police officials said it only provided cover for criminals to remove arms and immunition.”
This is what the Muslims in these areas did to the Indian Army, not just the Gujarat police. And the Gujarat police, for fear of being labeled anti-Muslim, was slow in dealing with the Muslim extremists.
See what happened in Ahmedabad on 13 March 2002. Muslims unfurled banners saying, “We will spill your bloods on the streets”. These things have been largely ignored by the English media.
Now let us come to the most important detail. Muslims in Ahmedabad killed a Hindu in Himmatnagar after gouging out his eyes. Surely, this was a case worth noticing by the English media? The Best Bakery case (in which 3 out of the 14 killed are Hindus), which was raised by the national media and was virtually tried by the media and not the judiciary, should also have been raised. The causes of the minority communities too should be raised. The media should not become an anti-Muslim institution also. But it should also not be anti-Hindu to the hilt. This case of a young Hindu’s eyes being gouged out and his subsequent murder deserves 100 times more publicity than the Best Bakery case. This habit of gouging out eyes and subsequent murder is a medieval practice.
To understand the media’s bias as well as details of Muslim aggression-let us see The Times of India’s report on this issue dated 18 March 2002. Let us remember that India Today weekly told that on 17 March Muslims attacked Dalits in Danilimda area of Ahmedabad.
“Mobs attack police post, combing operations on
Ahmedabad: Police have carried out massive combing operations in the city following attacks by violent mobs on the security personnel on Friday night. During the combing operations, a 65-year-old man died of shock after he was arrested by an army contingent from Dariapur for possessing a revolver. A youth was killed in police firing when a 5,000-strong mob tried to attack Dudheshwar police chowky in Madhavpura area. According to police sources, an army contingent, which was confronted by a 700-strong mob, identified the accused, a resident of Char Musa Ni Pole in Dariapur, who was brandishing a revolver and a big knife. The mob was dispersed by the army. In the combing operation that followed, the army men traced the accused at Char Musa Ni pole in Dariapur. He was arrested and taken to Dariapur police station where he complained of uneasiness. The accused was taken to the civil hospital where he was declared brought dead. A few hours later, a 23-year-old fell victim to police firing while eight persons were injured in Dudheshwar area when police tried to disperse a violent mob. “Our men braved heavy stone-pelting and petrol bombs but the mob swelled beyond 5,000 around 3 am, forcing us to open fire in self-defence,” says G C Ravat, senior Police Inspector at Madhavpura police station. The police and State Reserve Police personnel fired 21 rounds to disperse the mob and prevent it from advancing to the majority community-dominated areas. Madhavpura police has registered a case against 38 persons for murderous assault on police chowky and clamped curfew in its police station area. Police recovered crude bombs, sharp-edged weapons, slings and crates of petrol bombs. “We have recovered a lot of substances which could be possibly used for fuelling violence,” says M T Mehta, Assistant Commissioner of Police, Ahmedabad. Madhavpura police also opened fire in Idgah area to control violence unleashed by a 500-strong mob. Three people were injured. Police fired three rounds and lobbed three tear gas cells to disperse a mob at Rakhial cross-roads. Meanwhile, indefinite curfew continued in the areas of Kalupur, Shahpur and Karanj. Madhavpura and Dariapur were put under curfew since 3 am on Saturday. Police arrested 112 persons from six police commissionerate zones. Reports of crowds assembling at various places in Amraiwadi, Rakhial, Khadia, Karanj and Kalupur areas kept pouring in at the police control room.”
See the sentence- “The police and State Reserve Police personnel fired 21 rounds to disperse the mob and prevent it from advancing to the majority community-dominated areas.” This shows that it was a Muslim mob. The Muslims attacked Police and see how The Times of India reported it.
The following is another report from weekly India Today written by Uday Mahurkar in the weekly’s issue dated 20 May 2002:
“On the morning of May 7, Amrit Chagganlal, a camel cart owner, was passing by the Sarkhej area on Ahmedabad’s outskirts. It was the 70th day since communal riots had engulfed Gujarat following the killing of 57 Ramsevaks at Godhra on February 27. It was difficult and dangerous times but Chagganlal ventured out in a bid to eke out a living. A mob suddenly appeared as if out of nowhere, surrounded him and hacked him to death before throwing his body into a well. Chagganlal was the 933rd victim of the continuing communal violence in Gujarat that shows no signs of ebbing…
By nightfall, the death toll had crossed the 940 mark when a group of Muslims in Ahmedabad’s Shah Alam area drew Hindus out by throwing bombs at their homes in the Maninagar area and then launched a fierce attack with country-made weapons and crude bombs. BSF jawans who intervened were fired upon before they killed five of the attackers and arrested several others with a huge quantity of weapons including a country made cannon…
… True, since the last round of violence began on Ramnavmi day on April 21, violence has been restricted to Ahmedabad, Vadodara and Lunawada, a small town in Panchmahal district…
… The concern is understandable. Unlike the first phase of riots, now Hindus too have begun to suffer thanks to a new belligerence of Muslims who have been under siege for the past ten weeks. The repeated recovery of huge catches from Muslim pockets forced some of the ministers to ask Modi about the steps the police was taking to flush out the armouries…
… Says Dharmesh Vyas, 26, a employee of a private company who is recovering from bullet wounds sustained in firing by Muslim mobs: “If Modi is removed, the violence will increase because there is a feeling among the Hindus that the riots are now engineered by Modi’s rivals to get rid of him. It is Modi’s presence that is keeping Hindus in check. Once he is gone, things will become uncontrollable”…
… In Ahmedabad, riots continue despite the two peace meetings between religious leaders of both Muslims and the RSS-VHP combine and joint statements calling for peace. It took the VHP less than two days to consider backtracking from peace initiatives following attacks on Hindu localities…
…Among the factors which kept the communal pot boiling in Ahmedabad are the 40-odd relief camps in the city in which over 50,000 Muslims are lodged…There is pressure on the government to close down some of these relief camps amid unconfirmed reports that at least some of these camps have become sanctuaries for Muslim trouble-makers…”
Another report in the same issue of the same story says:
“… A series of attacks by Muslims on policemen during the riots have further added to the mutual lack of faith. Now strapped with the anti-Muslim label, the police has been slow in acting against Muslim fanatics…”
This report shatters many of the myths created by the media. Far from being anti-Muslim, the Gujarat police was slow to act against Muslim fanatics for fear being called anti-Muslim. Does the English media not owe a share of responsibility to the society? It is the media, electronic and print, in reality, which prevented the Gujarat police from taking action against the Muslim fanatics.
This report also shows that it was the Muslims who started most of the riots after 3rd March 2002. If the Hindus rioted, it was in retaliation for Muslim attacks, or in self-defence. The Muslims attacked Hindus in Ahmedabad’s Shah Alam area and not only that, they also attacked the BSF jawans. The Army and also the Gujarat police recovered huge catches of weapons from the Muslim areas. But the media turned a blind eye to this. These were not isolated incidents. Most of the events were similar to them after 3rd March 2002.
Now let us look at the violence after the first three days by weekly India Today in the same issue on pp 28-29:
“10 weeks of terror. Between Feb 27 and March 2, 563 died. Modi said the violence was now contained. The facts…
Week 1- March 3-9 17 dead
Week 2- March 9-16 32 dead
Week 3- March 17-23 43 dead
Week 4- March 24-30 54 dead
Week 5- March 31-April 6 149 dead
Week 6- April 6-12 51 dead
Week 7- April 13-19 6 dead
Week 8- April 20-26 17 dead
Week 9- April 27-May 3 5 dead
Week 10- May 4-10 30 dead
Total dead-972 “
This goes to show that after the first three days, average of about 6 killings a day took place, which was a result of bloody Hindu-Muslim riots and not one-sided rioting. As we can see, at least in the last three weeks riots were engineered by the Congress resulting in the death of 52 people, since all the riots after 21st April were instigated by the Congress Party to target Narendra Modi in the ongoing Parliament session. We will see this in detail later.
Out of the 563 people mentioned by India Today who died in the first three days, 57 were killed in Godhra who were Hindus. (Actually, 59 were killed in Godhra, but at that time it was reported 57 in most of the media). Hence as per the weekly India Today 506 people were killed in the first three days, out of whom 98 people were shot dead in police firing. Contrast 506 people killed in three days and 409 in more than 70 days.
The same weekly in the same issue also reports:
“What is adding to the knife-edge tension is the growing evidence that the violence has a deliberate pattern and there’s a motive to keep the flames from being doused. Violence seemed to have been brought under control by the second week of March until sporadic attacks on Hindus in Ahmedabad, Bharuch and Modasa in the midst of state school board examinations reignited the embers. But it escalated on a Ramnavmi day when a police constable was killed in Ahmedabad’s Gomtipur (Muslim) area. The sudden spurt of violence followed after a call given by local Muslim leaders to students from the community to boycott the rescheduled state school examinations failed…”
This clearly shows that it was the Muslims who kept the rioting alive. It was they who instigated the violence, at least after 13th March 2002. After 21st April 2002, the Congress Party instigated riots.
Now let us read the report of PTI dated 19 September 2003:
“Pak flag was hoisted after Godhra carnage: witness
A witness deposing before the two-member commission inquiring into the Gujarat riots said today that Muslims in the sensitive Amraiwadi area unfurled the Pakistani flag and raised pro-Pakistan slogans ten days after the Godhra riots. He also claimed that Hindus are still being tormented in the area.
“A large group of Hindus, who were returning after completing the final rites of 15 from Amraiwadi killed in the Godhra train carnage, found a mob of Muslims gathered near Khanwadi locality and heard statements like ‘kafeeron ko kaat dalo, makan khali karao (Kill the infidels and empty their houses)’,” said Ashok Patel, Bharatiya Janata Party member and municipal corporator from Bagh-e-Firdaus ward.
Patel told Justice G T Nanavati (retired) and Justice K G Shah (retired), “After nearly 10 days of the train carnage, Pakistani flags were unfurled on top of a public tank in Ramol area and Muslims shouted slogans like ‘Pakistan zindabad [Long live Pakistan]’.”
He claimed that though Hindus had observed restraint and averted any major clash on the day of cremation of the Godhra victims, riots were triggered after Muslims instigated them “with an intention of spreading fear”.
Patel alleged that after the riots, a large number of Hindu families vacated their houses and moved elsewhere.
During cross-examination, the corporator said no Hindu had ever made a representation to him about confiscation of property by Muslims.
At least 15 persons from Ramol and Jantanagar, under the Amraiwadi police station, were among the 59 karsevaks charred to death when a coach of the Sabarmati Express was set ablaze near Godhra railway station on February 27 last year.
A riot victim produced a videocassette reportedly showing the damage to his shop and urged the police to form a ‘committee’ of both Hindus and Muslims so that “people can come closer”. He said he had given the same cassette to the National Human Rights Commission”
We already have seen the report of an organization as anti-Hindu as the Human Rights Watch to see how Hindus were attacked by Muslims as early as 1st March 2002 in Ahmedabad. This is what The Times of India reported (Sanjay Pandey was the reporter) dated 18th March 2002:
“Riots hit all classes, people of all faith
Ahmedabad: With great effort Harish Parmar limps forward to greet you. His right leg was hit with a bullet above his right knee joint when he was running away from the mobsters involved in torching his house. Like Harish three other youngsters are also limping their way to future at a relief camp allegedly shot at by some bad elements involved in bootlegging business when riots was in full swing in Jamalpur. Their woes, worries and plight is similar to one faced any other riot-victim clustered at various relief camps. Contrary to popular belief that only Muslims have been affected during recent riots more than 10,000 persons belonging to Hindu community have also become homeless. The last batch of refugees in fact came in on Friday night from the Shahpur area when they tried to take shelter in the civil hospital as they had nowhere else to go. Volunteers later took them to a relief camp set up in a school in the Pritampura area on Saturday morning. “There seems to some confusion about the people affected in recent riots. You will not find them in government rolls because they never registered with District Collectorate,” says Narendra Patel, a local relief worker revealing that most of them have taken refuge at various community sponsored camps. He added that rather than approaching the state government aided camps the riot-affected Hindu families got shelter and support from their own community members and relatives. Most of these affected families were living as micro-minority in some of the Muslim-dominated areas around the city. Hiralal ni chali in Jamalpur, Nagarvel Hanuman in Bapunagar, Mangal park in Amraiwadi, Saryudasji Mandir at Prem Darwaja and municipal school, Kankaria are some of the few relief camps filled with members of majority community. “Hindus who have been blamed more often for actively supporting hooliganism and triggering post-Godhra riots have actually found themselves at the receiving end,” says Kalpesh Jha, another relief worker at Hiralal ni chali in Jamalpur complaining that other side of the story was never heard. “Attack on us was completely unprovoked on the bandh day despite the fact that no-first-attack truce was arrived between both the communities earlier in the day,” says Babubhai Borisa 42, resident of new municipal labour quarters at Jamalpur. He narrated that they were attacked with acid bulbs, petrol and crude bombs and were also fired at local bootleggers belonging to minority community. Around 600 people from municipal quarters have taken refuge in Hiralal ki chali near Geeta Mandir Laati Bazaar and refused to go back to their homes unless government makes some arrangement for their safety. “You are asking me to venture into lion’s den,” retorts Paljibhai Muljibhai Parmar when asked whether he would like to go to his original place. Another 106 families belonging to Vaghri community were forced to leave their homes when a 2000 strong crowd torched 70 pucca houses in Vaghariwas near Prem Darwaja. “They looted our property, torched houses, desecrated our temples and later tried to kill us but we escaped somehow,” says Rameshbhai Dantania camping at Saryudasji Mandir near Prem Darwaja, a stone throw away from his own house. Dantania alleged that since 1969 there was an SRP point to prevent any untoward incident between both the communities but this time it was removed at the behest of Dariapur police station and incident occurred.”
Need we explain the truth of the Gujarat riots in any further detail? This is a report not from any of the Gujarati newspapers or weekly Organiser but from The Times of India! This same daily has launched some of the worst hate-campaign against Narendra Modi and the BJP at the time of the riots in Gujarat, and has continued the tirade ever since. It also continues o published a bunch of lies on the Gujarat riots on its editorial pages and has launched a ‘Modi-hatao’ campaign ever after he won a huge majority in the December 2002 elections in Gujarat.
See the statement, “Contrary to popular belief that only Muslims have been affected during recent riots more than 10,000 persons belonging to Hindu community have also become homeless”. It should be noticed that this daily does not seem to realize that it itself was responsible for the worst kind of lies on the subject, which resulted in the ‘popular belief’ that only Muslims were affected by the riots.
Unfortunately, some parts of this story seem unclear. See the statement “Attack on us was completely unprovoked on the bandh day despite the fact that no-first-attack truce was arrived between both the communities earlier in the day.” This statement indicates that Hindus were attacked by Muslims, completely unprovoked, at Jamalpur on 28 February just like in Bapunagar, since 28 February was the day of the bandh called in Gujarat by the VHP to protest against the Godhra killings, while 1st March 2002 was the day of the bandh in the rest of India, from which Gujarat was exempted.
This article by Sanjay Pandey for The Times of India clearly proves that Hindus were homeless and had to live in refugee camps in Gujarat.
On 20 April 2002- The Telegraph reported-
“Bad PR charge on Atal, Modi
New Delhi, April 20:
High-profile member of the National Commission for Minorities, John Joseph, today said he had asked the Gujarat government to publish the names of those killed in police firing in various parts of the state, but the Narendra Modi government had not bothered to do so.
The commission had summoned the Gujarat chief secretary and home secretary to Delhi on April 6. “We grilled them for two-and-a-half hours and I suggested that they publish the names of Hindus killed in police firing. But the government declined, saying that it would create problems,” Joseph said.
“As on April 6, 126 persons were killed in police firing, of which 77 were Hindus. There is no doubt Muslims suffered a lot. If the real list was published it would have shocking revelations,” he added.
“The government of India and Gujarat government’s PR work is bad. It is a major lapse. A good number of Hindus were also killed. But I do not know why they are not disclosing the names,” Joseph said….”
Even a Christian member of the National Commission for Minorities said that a good number of Hindus were also killed and accused the Atal Bihari Vajpayee Government as well as the Gujarat Government of having poor Public Relations work, a charge with which we completely agree.
Former Director General of Police B.P.Singhal wrote in his article in weekly Organiser dated 9 October 2005, “As on 5.3.2002, of the 98 relief/ refugee camps opened, 85 were for the Muslims and 13 were for the Hindus.” These 13 refugee camps for the Hindus, as early as 5th March 2002, must have been for these Hindus rendered homeless in riot cases in Bapunagar, Mahajan Na Vando and this case in Jamalpur, where the Hindus were attacked by Muslims as early as 28th February or 1st March 2002, just a day or two after Godhra, completely unprovoked.
The following is what India Today reports in its issue dated 18 March 2002:
“At a relief camp where the displaced Hindus were lodged in Ahmedabad, Modi’s visit (on 5 March) drew an enthusiastic response.” This is another clear admission by weekly India Today that Hindus were living in refugee camps in Gujarat as early as 5th March 2002.
To know the Muslim attacks on Hindus- let us see the following report of The Times of India dated 11 April 2002:
“Docs told to stay off minority areas
AHMEDABAD: “All Hindu doctors are warned that they are not safe practising in Muslim-dominated areas. They are thus requested to stop practising in such areas and also in minority trust-run hospitals with immediate effect”. This message issued by the Ahmedabad Doctors’ Forum, which has about 100 active members in the city, came as a direct fallout of the attack on Dr Amit Mehta, who was repeatedly stabbed in his clinic in Juhapura on Tuesday.
The incident has sent shock waves through the medical fraternity.
“In the past too, Hindu doctors practising in Muslim-dominated areas like Jamalpur and Gomtipur have been fatally attacked. And yesterday’s attack on Dr Mehta should serve as a warning to Hindu doctors to quit practising in Muslim areas,” ADF founder-member Dr Bharat Amin told TNN.
Already, Hindu doctors are reluctant to go to Muslim areas where their hospitals and clinics are located and this attack on one of their colleagues has only compounded their fears. “The uncertainity and insecurity is becoming too much. I have been practising in Shahpur for the past 30 years, but will I be able to trust my patients now?” asks Dr KR Sanghvi. Sanghvi had resumed seeing patients only a few days ago after having stayed away from his clinic for the better part of the month.
Dr Amit Mehta has understandably decided to give up his practice of 23 years and shut shop. “I have treated Muslim patients for more than two decades and this is what I got. I have escaped once, but my family does not want me to risk my life again,” Mehta told TNN from the hospital bed where he is recuperating.
While Mehta stresses that his case should not be generalised, an example is already being made of him. “Fear is looming large that we will be similarly attacked. In such a situation, we urge the government to provide us security for practising in such sensitive areas,” says president of the 200-member strong Vejalpur-Jivraj Medical Circle, Naresh Shah.
Shah said more than 50 doctors practising on the Vejalpur-Juhapura border have been forced to shut shop due to unprecedented tension.
It needs mention here that it is Hindu doctors that are mostly practising in Muslim areas what with Muslim doctors constituting a mere 2-3 per cent of the 5,000-odd medical practitioners in the city.
“Our job is most difficult. In emergencies we have to work at nights. If we go, we run the risk of being soft targets and if we don’t, we tend to incur the wrath of locals. The situation is getting more precarious by the day,” says a gynaecologist couple practising in Dariapur and Shahpur.
Meanwhile, the Ahmedabad Medical Association too met on Wednesday to discuss the fallout of the attack on the doctor. “We condemn this communal attack on a doctor who was giving selfless service to society without discrimating between Hindu and Muslim patients and stress that government provide security to doctors,” said AMA president Bipin Patel.
To this, health minister Ashok Bhatt said, “The attack on the doctor should be treated as an attack on humanity. The respective communities should take responsibility and ensure that doctors, who have been serving the society without discrimination, are safe. The request for security by any doctor will be considered by the government and addressed.”
Even doctors from the minority community have condemned the attack and said this would result in a negative fallout for the community. “Such assaults may result in a negative impact for a community that is largely dependent on Hindu doctors for treatment,” said Al Amin Hospital medical superintendent Dr Siddiqi Kazi.
Significantly, there are 82 Hindu doctors attached to Al Amin, of which only three have continued their services after the riots broke out. The hospital is reportedly seeking services of doctors from other states now.”
Such attacks were by and large ignored by the biased anti-Hindu pro-Muslim Indian English media -just The Times of India reported this once. See how communal the attackers were: they were actually attacking doctors who were serving members of their own community just because the doctors were of a different community.
Now let us see one of the biggest evidence of Muslim aggression. The following is the report of NDTV dated 13th March 2002:
“Mob attack in Godhra, 12 arrested
Wednesday, March 13, 2002 (Godhra) Within a fortnight of the February 27 railway station mayhem and subsequent violent fallout, tension escalated again today with a minority mob allegedly attacking people in the town, leading to police firing.
Police said a “500-people strong mob of minority community” attacked people in Jahurpura area near the Old Bus Stand. They resorted to stone pelting and also “opened fire” with private arms, police said.
Police opened fire and hurled tear gas shells to disperse the mob. There was no report of any injury or casualty so far.Additional forces of police, state reserve police and anti-riot Rapid Action Force (RAF) personnel led by senior DSP Raju Bhargava rushed to spot and carried out a combing operation. “Twelve persons including two women were picked up from a nearby place of worship,” police said. The situation was under control but tense, police said. ” (Courtesy: NDTV web)
This was the story carried by NDTV. NDTV, which is nothing but the mouthpiece of the CPI (M), reported that Muslims attacked Hindus in Godhra much after the February 27 carnage.
Along with this, let us now take a look at the report of The Indian Express dated 10 May 2002, Friday, written by Palak Nandi:
“A home for long now just a death trap
Posted online: Friday, May 10, 2002 at 0000 hours IST
AHMEDABAD, MAY 9: Prem Darwaza in Ahmedabad is another Panwad, though here Hindus are at the receiving end unlike the Vadodara village. The locality stands out with its burnt houses, and broken bangles, steel utensils and torn bed sheets scattered across the streets.
A half damaged wall full of charcoal scribbles summarises the Vaghri Vas locality’s feelings: ‘‘Mini Pakistan’’; ‘‘Miya Vad, Karachi’’; “Don’t come back or you’ll pay a heavy price’’, and ‘‘Hindus not allowed’’
Before the riots, around 800 people lived at Vaghri Vas, mostly Hindu Dalits In the hate wave that followed, both communities were targeted. While the Dalits fled, some Muslims dared to stay put.
Now things have changed. Unlike earlier, the minority community now calls the shots. Jeetendra Datania, an autorickshaw driver, said: ‘‘We were living here for almost 40 years. Though outsiders attacked their (Muslim) homes on February 28, they avenged it by driving us out on March 21. Now, not one of us dares to enter the locality.’’
A daily wager’s wife, Bhavnaben Naranbhai, said: ‘‘We were more in numbers. But we dare not enter our locality now. If we try, they shoo us away saying ‘Jo tha, sab khatam ho gaya. Chale jao, varna pachtaoge (Life’s no longer the same. Run or you’ll regret it).’’
The Dalits have put up at a nearby temple for when they returned home about a week back, they found dead animals in their houses. ‘‘The walls were full of warnings,’’ said Raju, Bhavnaben’s younger brother.
Life is much the same at Bhanderi-ni-Pol in Kalupur locality. As many as 518 riot-hit people from Kalupur Darwaza and Kalupur Tower now stay at the Bahuchar Mata nu Mandir. ‘‘We have no choice. My shop was looted, our house pelted with stones and handmade petrol bombs,’’ said Jaswantbhai Modi.
The locality of the temple is the ‘‘the border’’ for just across live Muslims. ‘‘A constant flow of stones, petrol bombs and even bullets from across the border is regular,’’ Nirmalaben Dave said. She lost her house in the riots. ‘‘We avoid going close to the border.’’
Though the camps here are registered, the refugees have not been allotted a building to stay in. Refugees in Kalupur sleep on the streets and those in Dariapur spend the days in a building under construction.”
What conclusions can one draw from this report? This report merely confirms the truth, that Hindus were also affected by the Gujarat riots. See the statement, “Unlike earlier, now it is the minority community which calls the shots.” As on 25 April 2002, a total of 40,000 Hindus were living in refugee camps, at a time when 1 lakh Muslims were living in refugee camps.
Far from being poor victims, see what some Muslims were doing in Ahmedabad.
It is worth reading another front-pages article in the same newspaper, i.e. The Indian Express, dated 7th May 2002, also written by Palak Nandi:
“ With no relief, they turn to religious places for shelter
Ahmedabad, May 6: THESE are the 1,000-odd riot victims for whom relief is an eyewash. While some have been driven away from their houses, others had no choice but to leave their houses badly damaged in the riots.
Relief seems to be a far-fetched idea because since the past 15 days, they have been spending their days either on the streets or in a half-constructed building.
About 550-odd residents of the Prem Darwaja Vagheri Vas, Dariyapur, had no choice but to leave behind their belongings and take shelter in a near-by temple, following the violence of March 21. These Dalit families claim that they had been attacked by the people belonging to the minority community, who damaged their houses, property and drove them out of the area.
‘‘We had no choice but to take shelter at this temple. However, the temple cannot accommodate all of us hence, we are compelled to live in this half-constructed building,’’ says Gautamiben Dhirabhai, a resident of the Vagheri Vas.
This half-constructed building is right opposite the temple, in the same premises and though it does not have a single fully-built room, it is the ‘house’ for more than 400 people, while the remaining sleep in the temple.
The situation is no different at a similar relief camp in Kalupur. The Bahuchar-Mata-nu-Madir, located at Bhanderi-ni-Pol at Kalupur, is currently accommodating about 518 riot-affected victims. They are the residents of areas located between Kalupur Darwaja and Kalupur Tower and which witnessed violence on March 21.
While a few of these people sleep at their neighbour’s house, some sleep in the temple while the rest, mainly the men, sleep in the lanes, just outside the temple. The temple area is called as ‘border area’ by the local residents, as across the temple is the locality of the Muslims. ‘‘There is a continuous flow of stones, petrol bombs and even bullets at times, from across the border. All of us avoid even going close to the border,’’ says Nirmalaben Dave, whose house has been damaged during the riots.
The inmates of both the camps have demanded for a building, but as yet none of them have been allotted one. ‘‘We have been demanding for the Kalpur Municipal school number 14 and 19, for a long time now, but we have not been allotted the school building. Because of the space shortage, these people have no choice but to eat and sleep in the lanes,’’ says Paresh Thakkar, organiser of the camp, who lives nearby.
For years, both Hindus and Muslims lived together in the area. Now the mutual trust and faith between the two communities has been replaced by fear, panic and hatred.
‘‘For more than 60 years, we lived peacefully and there was never any problem. However, on March 21, a few people of my locality came to me and told me that I should leave my house for good and if I return, they will not be responsible for the consequences,’’ says Badamiben Prajapari, who lives alone with her son.
‘‘It is not safe for these people to live here as one does not know when the stone-pelting and violence will begin. Already, the third floor of my building has been damaged due to the petrol bombs,’’ says Bhagyovadan Khatri, trustee of the temple. But the refugees are apprehensive about returning to their houses.
‘‘About five of us were injured in a private firing on March 21. All of us now are very careful and avoid going to their area, except in a group’’, says Hitendra Shah, who was injured in the incident.”
Some points to be noted here are: Did even the Muslim refugees suffer like this? Even Muslims who were displaced from their houses were given refugee camps to live in. But these Hindus had to sleep on the streets or in temples. This is a clear proof of the fact that Dalits suffered heavily in the riots, at the hands of Muslims. But the entire non-Gujarati media generally kept quiet on this issue. But despite this, at times the media did let slip in the truth. Will the editors of either The Times of India or The Indian Express remember their stories published in their own newspapers? Of course not. They will lie through the skin of their teeth that only Muslims suffered in the riots. The English media and the electronic media, in particular, NDTV, accused the Gujarati media of being biased. Far from it, it was the English media and the TV channels who were biased. What the Gujarati media reported about the Hindus suffering at the hands of Muslims was absolutely true; none other than The Times of India, The Indian Express or India Today admitted this on isolated occasions.
Now let us see one of the biggest evidence of Muslim aggression. The following is the report of NDTV dated 13th March 2002:
“Mob attack in Godhra, 12 arrested
Wednesday, March 13, 2002 (Godhra)
Within a fortnight of the February 27 railway station mayhem and subsequent violent fallout, tension escalated again today with a minority mob allegedly attacking people in the town, leading to police firing.
Police said a “500-people strong mob of minority community” attacked people in Jahurpura area near the Old Bus Stand. They resorted to stone pelting and also “opened fire” with private arms, police said.
Police opened fire and hurled tear gas shells to disperse the mob. There was no report of any injury or casualty so far.
Additional forces of police, state reserve police and anti-riot Rapid Action Force (RAF) personnel led by senior DSP Raju Bhargava rushed to spot and carried out a combing operation.
“Twelve persons including two women were picked up from a nearby place of worship,” police said. The situation was under control but tense, police said. (PTI)”
(Courtesy: NDTV web)
This was the story carried by NDTV. NDTV, which is nothing but the mouthpiece of the CPI (M), reported that Muslims attacked Hindus in Godhra much after the February 27 carnage.
As another instance of how Hindus were attacked, let us see the report of The Times of India dated 23rd March 2002:
“Rioters torch 50 shops at Revdi Bazaar
23 Mar, 2002 l 0218 hrs IST l TIMES NEWS NETWORK
Ahmedabad: The Revdi bazaar in Panchkuva area of the city transformed into a raging inferno on Thursday afternoon when manic rioters set shops afire. The market place, which houses wholesale cloth shops, soon erupted in flames that took the Ahmedabad fire brigade more than five hours to bring under control. Though no casualties were reported, the damage, say local shopkeepers, could well cross Rs 15 crore. It all began at 3.54 pm when a phone call on ‘101’ reported: “Revdi market is on fire.” The first telephone call was followed up with many more SOS at AFB’s headquarters in Danapith area. The calls warned of the biggest instance of arson ever since the days of intense rioting that had gripped Ahmedabad between February 28 and March 2. Of the 11 calls that kept AFB personnel busy, the inferno at Revdi market proved to be the worst. By the time the first two fire-tenders could reach the vicinity of Revdi bazaar, a thick column of smoke told a grim tale. That the market area, which houses more than 300 wholesale cloth shops, is characterized by a narrow and intricate network of lanes prevented fire tenders from reaching the spot of arson, making it doubly difficult for the firemen to douse the raging inferno. Within minutes, 14 fire tenders and water tankers were called in to control the fire. While senior AFB officials, including the chief fire officer (CFO) Bipin Jadeja, rushed to the spot, the fire tenders strove hard to bring the blaze under control. The fight had to continue till 9.30 pm but by then nearly 50 shops along with a large stock of garments were reduced to glowing cinders. Jadeja told TNN: “We did not make this an all brigade call in view of the tense situation gripping the city. The other hurdle that we had to encounter was the inaccessibility to the root cause of the fire. But after this long toil, I am satisfied that my men could stem the loss to property as without prompt action, this inferno could well have engulfed the large number of shops in the market as also the residential quarters behind. We have used nearly three lakh liters of water to douse the flames.” Local residents and shop owners who have suffered heavy losses due to the arson said the situation in Panchkuva had been tense soon after daybreak. “Since morning, there were instances of stone-throwing and abortive attacks on local shopkeepers and their residences. Matters turned worse after a mob attack on the Sindhi market was foiled by SRP personnel stationed at the site. The mob then turned its fury on the Revdi bazaar and started sprinkling acid, oil, petrol and inflammable chemicals on cloth shops. The next thing we knew, our shops were ablaze,” said Balram Thavani, a former BJP corporator and a local shop owner. Thavani, who is also the vice president of Revdi bazaar Salamati Samiti, told TNN: “only about 20 per cent of the burnt goods and shops were insured. Thursday’s rioting and arson has reduced their life’s earnings to ashes. For these middle-class families, earnings of a lifetime were reduced to ashes within moments.”
See the reporting of The Times of India when Muslims were the attackers! When some 50 Hindu shops were burnt down in Revdi Bazaar, reducing life-savings of middle-class Hindus to ashes, the media ignored the issue. It inflated the Muslim losses to no end. To see the media’s inflated reporting of the Muslim suffering in the Gujarat riots, one only needs to look at weekly India Today’s story in its issue dated 25 March 2002. Very few dailies bothered to report about these losses which the Hindus suffered in Gujarat. But the Gujarati media reported them. And hence, there was a contrast of day and night in the versions of the riots as projected by the ‘national’ English media, and the local Gujarati newspapers. The Tribune reported on 30 April 2002: “(On 29 April) Miscreants (i.e. Muslims) also reportedly set ablaze more than 36 shops, houses, kiosks, restaurants and godowns in the riot-hit city (Vadodara) in the past 24 hours.”
Attacks on Dalits
Let us see the report of Marathi daily Tarun Bharat dated July 21, 2002
“Dalits suffered heavily during Gujarat riots
Author: Prof. Dr Suvarna Raval
Publication: Mumbai Tarun Bharat (Marathi) – Translation
Date: July 21, 2002
The news of Godhra inferno and the subsequent riots which erupted in other parts of Gujarat were highly disturbing events for the minds of any person interested in the welfare of the society. Yet among them, those of fights between Muslims and Dalits and Muslims and Adivasis were very surprising. Generally the slogan of ‘Dalit, Muslims – Bhai Bhai’ is raised and given a high pitch. There is also a talk of forming a federation of Dalit and Muslim by alienating Dalits from Hindu society. On this background, the news of Muslim crowds attacking Dalit localities or Adivasis shattering the Muslim localities was astonishing. The apprehension that perhaps, the Dalits are being used as shields in the Hindu Muslim riots also came to mind. This was the background in our minds, when we proceeded to visit Gujarat on behalf of the Survey Committee of Samarasata Manch.
But what awaited us was quite different.
…In the group of Ramsevaks in Sabarmati Express which was burnt to charred remains by Muslim fundamentalists, there were some Dalit youths also. Just as they became martyrs in the carnage, there were many Dalit brothers living in slums of different parts of Ahmedabad who were victims of Muslims attack. We heard a number of heart-rending reports from the relatives and neighbours of the dead persons during our sojourn in Gujarat. I am giving below a few of them by way of samples.
Ramjibhai Parmar was a 24 years youth from Gomatipur area which is inhabited by Valmiki community. He saw Constable Amarbhai Patil patrolling near the Masjid was being attacked with swords by Muslims and went to rescue him but Muslims fired at him and shot him dead.
Devendrabhai Solanki from Radhanpur, working in the Ahmedabad Sales Tax Office as Notice Server had come to the Nanu Wadkar house for Holi. On 30th March, stone-throwing started in the direction of this house. Children were playing in front of the house and to take them inside the home, he came out. A mob of about 5000 Muslims rushed on him while Darmesh some how slipped out, but one of them cut his face with sword. He lost his front teeth. Miss Dipti Solanki, daughter of Dendrabhai Solanki weeping incessantly, told us bitterly that after 13 days, the dead body of Devendrabhai were found cut in 25 pieces.
25 years old Vasantkumar Parmar, earning Rs.1000 p. m. by working in a private factory, was looking after his old father and unmarried sister. After curfew was withdrawn, bombs were thrown near his house, the lights went out and by the deafening sound of explosion Vasantkumar rushed out of house running. The Muslims which were hiding in an ambush on the way-out, attacked him with swords and killed him on the spot. His death cries shocked his sister-in-law Gitaben but she had the presence of mind to beat the Dish (Thali) loudly and collected people nearby. Muslims attacked this locality of 125 families from all four sides. If we had weapons, we would have fought with them better. Gitaben was sobbing saying, “My younger brother-in-law became a victim without any reason.
Pravinbhai Mooljibhai Solanki, a 25-year-old youth, living in the Ramanpura area, Saatchaali was running a Panpatti shop on lease. On Ramanavami day (21st April 2002) while he was returning home after closing his shop, Muslims attacked and killed him. Mooljibhai told us that Muslims from Daryapur-Kalupur area came in our locality and exploded a bomb. As the children and women were running away, Muslims fired on them. If Dalits kept arms with them for their protection, the Police took action on them, but they take no action on the Muslims when they keep them. He said they had a serious gripe against Police for this discrimination.
In the Khariwadi of Shahpura slum, there are about 220 Hindu and 10-15 Muslim families. To the left of the slum, there is a restaurant Relief Club. The Muslim manager of this hotel, got together fanatic Muslim youths from the same locality and set the houses in the locality on fire, first taking care to remove all inhabitants of Muslim houses to a safe place. They burnt houses of 35 Hindu families. Everywhere there was a desperate cry. Two girls from two houses were burnt alive. Seeing this spectacle, a 10 year Hindu boy, Suresh Mehru died of the shock. The Sindhi owner of the Hotel Reviera which is to the right of the slum, gave asylum to all these people and made arrangements for their food. These people of the slum belonging to Vaghari community were running the business of selling old clothes.
Behrampura is a Muslim-majority area having a population of 1,20,000. We found that in the minds of the Dalit community, there was a terrible anger against Muslims who had shattered the life of their community. Yusuf Ajmeri with a 1000 strong mob and with swords and guptis in their hands rushed to Hindu locality shouting “Kill Hindus, Allah is with us”. On 28th February, Kisanbhai Bhikabhai Dantani who was returning from work, was attacked on his chest with swords and was killed on the spot. His 70 year old mother was telling with deep sorrow depicted on her face. She told that this treachery was done by their neighbours who were living along with them for last 8-10 years. She said, “They had come to finish us. My son was killed, my daughter-in-law could not stand it and has left for her village. What will be the fate of my grandson Sanjay? They have completely made our life desolate and barren.”
Muslims living in Behramura have houses with 2-3 storeys. They resorted to heavy stone-throwing on the Dalit localities. Jaisinghbhai Shyamjibhai, who had passed 9th Standard and working in a Hosiary shop was standing near his house. A heavy brick came down spinning at a great speed and hit Jaisinghbhai on the chest. The impact was so disastrous that his chest cage nearly broke open and he died on 1st March. Father of Jaisinghbhai works on daily wages in the Municipality. He was narrating us this history along with his children, all of them were terrified and jittery.
Dani-Limda area of Ahmedabad has a large population of weavers community. Piyushkumar a youngster living in the Annpurna Housing Society was told by Mustak Kania, Mohamed Rafique, Kasimbhai Ganichiya and Mustak Menon from Dhruv Society just in the front side, that they were planning to launch a rocket from their building and as the rocket will take off, Mecca – Madina will be visible. Believing this story, he went to see it with curiosity, but on going there, was riddled with bullets in the throat and liver. His father and other youths from the society took him to Lallubhai Govardhandas General Hospital, but before anything was done, he died on 12th April at 6 p.m. His parents were unable to speak anything to us and hence, his grand father related us this terrible story.
Dayabhai Rathod from Nirmalpura had taken Voluntary Retirement and was living along with his wife, 3 daughters and his only son Pinakin of 26 years old. When stone-throwing started, a bullet from the Police hit him and he was killed on the spot. We were simply short of any words of consolation for the continuously weeping parents. His maternal uncle was expressing terrible anger against the Police.
Ms Induben Laljibhai Gohil living in the Municipal Sweepers Colony near Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar bridge in Chamunda died of a Police firing. Jitu of Marwari community living in Behrampura locality also died in Police firing.
Dinesh Kantilal Makwana from Damodar Chawl was returning on 3rd March from his work. Near the graveyard, two Muslim youths stabbed him to death. His address was found by the police from some papers in his pocket and his body which had undergone post-mortem, was handed over to his grandmother who was the only relative he had.
Generally, Muslim community lives close together. In many areas, there are Dalit localities or slums alongside. Around such area there are many small factories run by Muslims and Dalit labourers working in them, live surrounded by the factories and Muslims. Those Dalit brothers who could not go out due to curfew, got caught in the deadly grip of Muslims. These financially weak people were the soft target for the Muslims. From the terraces of houses, it was easy and safe for Muslims to attack the single storeyed houses, slums or sometimes two storeyed houses with stones, and crude bombs. In the closed Muslim locality of Gomatipur, even an electric current was sent preventing Police to enter.
Crooked and selfish Politicians:
These stories are indicative and not exhaustive. Atrocities on Dalits were done on such a vast scale, but no secular politician from Sonia Gandhi to Ramvilas Paswan felt like visiting the affected Dalit localities. The reporters of English press or channels did not come at all to these areas. No progressive person wearing the mask of ‘anti-fanaticism’ felt like to wipe the tears of Dalits. Anti-fanaticism means unleashing criticism on Hindus is their equation and they have firm belief in the convictions that the love for Dalits is only a point for propaganda. The Dalits in Gujarat have got the test of this naked truth in the recent riots.
At the same time, Dalits got experience of the people from so-called Anti-Dalit organisations, RSS, VHP, Bajrang Dal etc. coming to their rescue risking their own lives.
During this survey, we came to know as to how true was the minute analysis of Muslim mindset done by Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar.”
With this report, there is nothing left for me to comment or explain. See the contrasts in the reporting of the English media and the reality! I can only say- The so-called Hindu nationalists of the Sangh Parivar have miserably failed to uphold the truth, and save their own skins, and allowed lies to triumph.
The Tribune reported on 30 April 2002-
“Ahmedabad, April 29
The death toll in Gujarat since the February 27 Sabarmati Express carnage reached 900 today, with the fragile peace being shattered repeatedly in Ahmedabad and Vadodara.
The police said of the seven persons seriously injured when the crude bombs they were making exploded in their house in Kalupur this morning, two had died in hospital. One person was stabbed to death in Gomtipur within hours of the conclusion of the peace rally led by Defence Minister George Fernandes and Chief Minister Narendra Modi.
Prior to the rally, three persons had died in Chandola Talao area under the Maninagar police station.
In Kalupur, two persons died in police firing late last night as sporadic violence, arson and group clashes continued.
A report from Anand said that two scooter-borne men tried to shoot a man on his morning walk, but he ducked in time. The police later recovered the revolver and cartridge shell from the spot.
VADODARA: Despite imposition of indefinite curfew and heavy security bandobast, sporadic incidents of violence and arson continued unabated in Vadodara city for the fourth consecutive day.
At least three persons were injured in private firing and another in stone throwing following group clashes at Navidharti in the curfew-bound Karelibaug area, where a rocket launcher was also recovered by the police early today.
Reports said at least 15 persons were injured, including five in private firing and as many in acid bomb attacks, during the past 24 hours in the city as mobs engaged in intense fighting.
Miscreants (Muslims) also reportedly set ablaze more than 36 shops, houses, kiosks, restaurants and godowns in the riot-hit city in the past 24 hours.
Reports said several families belonging to the majority (Hindu) community had fled from Tandalja following mounting communal tension in the area, where the authorities had provided shelter to nearly 2000 members of the minority community. Meanwhile, the police registered a case of attempt to murder against Congress councillor Manzoorkhan Pathan and arrested his brother on the same charge for their alleged murderous attack on a family at Junigadi Harijan Basti on Saturday.
According to the police, violence also erupted in Savli past night, forcing the police to open two rounds of fire to disperse the warring mobs. UNI”
This report quoted from The Times of India (dated 18 March 2002, written by Leena Misra) is also worth reading:
“Ahmedabad: When Union Home Minister L K Advani answered Rajya Sabha MP Shabana Azmi’s query in the parliament on Monday saying that more from the majority community fell to police bullets than the minorities in the recent riots, he was referring to the whole of Gujarat. Sixty per cent of the people who died due to police firing were from the majority community, the state-wide figures show. But the scene in Ahmedabad is quite the reverse. In the city that is considered communally and politically most volatile, more members of the minority community died in the police firing. According to figures available, 57 per cent (23 out of 40) of the people killed in the police firing belong to the minority community. This figure should be seen with the toll of rioting in Ahmedabad which shows that out of the 286 people killed, some 41 were Hindus killed in about 5,500 rounds of firing by the police. Similarly in the state, of the 571 people who died in other violence, 494 people from the minority community were killed in the riots that followed the Godhra carnage as compared to 77 from the majority community. But the state figures, as against Ahmedabad, show that of the 100 that succumbed to the police firing, 60 were Hindus.”
That as many as 40 % people killed in police firing were Muslims, shows that they too were rioting. After the first three days, most of the people killed in police firing must have been Muslims, since in the first three days, out of the 98 people shot dead by the police, around 70 were Hindus.
Another report worth reading is the one of The Times of India dated 28 April 2002-
“More fall prey to police firings in Gujarat
GANDHINAGAR: Two months after the riots began in Gujarat, there is a perceptible change in the type of people falling prey to police bullets. The latest statistics available with the Gujarat Police show that more Muslims have been killed in police firing in Gujarat than Hindus.
Statistics made available by top sources in the Police Bhavan here show that out of the 170 persons killed in the state so far, 93 are Muslims and 77 Hindus.
According to officials this was not the case in March when records suggested that 60 out of 100 killed in police firing were Hindus and 40 were Muslims.
These damning statistics, which are also being sought by the National Commission for Minorities clearly show that of the 70 people killed in the second month of violence, an overwhelming 53 are Muslims and only 17 Hindus.
This, police officials would claim, was a result of trying to control the ‘Muslim backlash’ that was being talked about in the official circles.
Police officials said that the backlash could be especially seen in Ahmedabad, where out of the total number of persons injured in stabbings, 62 are Hindus and 30 Muslims.
The overall figures for Gujarat of those injured in stabbings tell a different story, with 131 Hindus and 179 Muslims.
The figures should be seen in the light of the community-wise break-up of total number of riot victims in Gujarat. The break-up is available for 726 deaths in riots, which show that 552 Muslims and 168 Hindus, including the 59 Godhra train victims, have been killed so far.
It is significant that the maximum jump in police firing deaths of the two communities has taken place in Ahmedabad, where right from the begining of the riots, the number of Muslims falling to police bullets is disproportionately high.
About a month back, out of the total of 40 police firing victims in Ahmedabad, 17 were Hindus and 23 Muslims.
Today, the Ahmedabad figures show that of the 90 people killed in police firing, 59 are Muslims and 31 Hindus. This means, of the 50 people killed in police firing in Ahmedabad in the second month, 36 are Muslims and only 14 Hindus.
In other words, in the second month of violence, the percentage of Muslims falling to police bullets is a staggering 72 per cent…
The police records also show that of the 523 places of worship damaged in the last two months of riots, 298 were dargahs, 205 mosques, 17 temples and three churches. Besides, of the total substantive arrests made by the police, 9,954 are Hindus and 4,035 Muslims.
However, in the preventive arrests column, the statistics show that the number of Hindus arrested is much higher — 17,947 as against 3,616 Muslims.
The police estimates also put the total property loss in the state at Rs 682 crore. However, while community-wise break-up of the damage is not available for Gujarat, the figures for Ahmedabad are — Muslims, Rs 400 crore, and Hindus Rs 10 crore.”
However this man’s figures of Hindus killed in the riots seem to be deliberately kept low. On 18 March, Leena Misra told us that by 17 March 137 Hindus had been killed in the riots, 77 in riots and 60 in police firing. That is a total of 137 Hindus. Here Sanjay Pandey gives a figure of 168 Hindus including 59 killed in Godhra. This would mean a total of 109 Hindus killed after Godhra till 27 April, but Leena Misra told us that on 17 March itself 137 Hindus were killed! So the conclusion to be drawn is 168 must be the number of Hindus killed after Godhra.
This is just the tip of the iceberg. Quotations and analysis of reports of the newspapers of those days exposing the myths of the Gujarat riots can go on and on. But despite these evidences, the media is hell-bent on denying the bitter truth, that even after Godhra, the riots that happened were not one-sided.