'Muslim lives matter': Indian police book lawyers probing communal violence in Tripura state

Published November 4, 2021
In this file photo, policemen patrol in a riot affected area after clashes erupted between people demonstrating for and against a new citizenship law in New Delhi, India on Feb 25. — Reuters/File
In this file photo, policemen patrol in a riot affected area after clashes erupted between people demonstrating for and against a new citizenship law in New Delhi, India on Feb 25. — Reuters/File

The Indian police on Wednesday booked two lawyers, who were part of a fact-finding committee to investigate the violence that broke out in the state of Tripura last month, causing damage to mosques and properties owned by Muslims, according to The Wire.

The lawyers — Mukesh and Ansar Indori — had released a report, titled ‘Humanity under attack in Tripura; #Muslim lives matter’, on Tuesday, revealing at least 12 mosques, nine shops, three houses of Muslims were targeted by radical outfits such as Bajrang Dal, Vishwa Hindu Parishad and Hindu Jagaran Manch during the violence last month.

The advocates were a part of a four-member fact-finding team that had visited the state on Oct 29 in order to document the incidents of violence targeting the Muslim community.

The report compiled by the lawyers highlighted that the latest violence was a “result of the irresponsibility of the administration, extremist organisations and the vested interests of ambitious politicians”.

The right-wing extremist organisations had held protest rallies after several temples in Bangladesh were reportedly vandalised on Oct 15, in a bid to spark violence against the Muslim population of the state.

The report also stated that, “During the rallies, Hindutva mobs raised slogans against the community and also attacked mosques and Muslim houses.”

However, the police said the lawyers were booked after they spread fake information about the incident on social media.

“I merely shared on social media what we saw. We held a press conference in Delhi [while releasing the report], and thereafter did a Facebook Live of the event. I think they had an issue with this Facebook Live," one of the lawyers named Mukesh was quoted as saying by The Wire.

The police have also directed the lawyers to appear before the West Agartala Police Station on November 10.

Tensions have gripped Tripura in recent weeks following the attacks on mosques and properties owned by Muslims. On Oct 29, the Tripura High Court had taken a suo motu notice of the violence and directed the government to submit a report on the matter by Nov 10.

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