Washington D.C., July 26, 2008
Indian Muslim Council-USA (IMC-USA: http://www.imc-usa.org), an advocacy group dedicated towards safeguarding India's pluralist and tolerant ethos, denounces in strongest possible terms the bomb blasts in the Indian cities of Ahmedabad and Bangalore and expresses solidarity with the victims.
According to reports, a series of 17 blast occurred in crowded places in Ahmedabad city leaving at least 29 people dead and over 100 injured. A day earlier, the city of Bangalore was struck with bomb blasts that killed 2 people and injured several others. "Humanity is the ultimate victim in such acts of mindless violence" said Mr. Rasheed Ahmed, President of IMC-USA. He further stated that "The authorities should conduct a thorough and transparent investigation immediately and refrain from adopting the usual template of blaming Muslim sounding virtual groups whose existence or lack thereof cannot be proven".
In recent months, authorities have come under intense criticism for their ineffectiveness in conducting honest and transparent probes into blasts that rocked other Indian cities. During the blasts in Hyderabad last year, rather than track the culprits, the police arrested scores of innocent Muslim youths associated with various civil liberties groups in the city. After weeks of harassment and torture, almost all the arrested had to be released on account of lack of evidence.
This police embarrassment was preceded by the high profile expose and convictions of top police officials from Gujarat who were running a racket of killing innocent Muslims in "fake encounters" by labeling them as terrorists belonging to Muslim militant groups.
Earlier last year, some Intelligence Bureau officers confessed to an official CBI inquiry that members of Intelligence Bureau itself are involved in "training and manufacturing terrorists" who are recruited and sent on "terrorist missions" where they are handily arrested by awaiting cops. These cops then get promotions and bravery awards.
IMC-USA calls upon government and police authorities to demonstrate political will and nab the perpetrators of this heinous crime by conducting a transparent and honest investigation rather than taking the convenient route of scapegoating innocent people.
Indian Muslim Council-USA is the largest advocacy organization of Indian Muslims in the United States with 10 chapters across the nation.
Dr. Hyder Khan