Bengali-speaking Muslim with proof of being Indian, harassed and tortured in Delhi

The time for terror-raj is not far away. Bengali-speaking Muslims are prone to be identified as illegal Bangladeshis, harassed and tormented in Indian jails.

What about the attempt to bribery by the police?
Do people have to be ‘connected’ to get and aspire for justice?

These disturbing questions should make the police authorities to get to the bottom of this story, and not harass innocent citizens of the country.

Who’s the real Bangladeshis?

State splits migrant family
14 Jan 2009

NEW DELHI: Mohammad Khalid’s world has turned upside down in a week. It began with a police raid at 3.44am on January 6, when he and his family were picked up by Delhi Police from their Faridabad home after being identified as Bangladeshis. Though he was released, allegedly to get money for paying off the cops, he hasn’t been allowed to meet either his wife or children.

And now, by a quirk of law, the wife and younger son face deportation for being illegal migrants. An auto-rickshaw driver, Khalid who has given ‘proof’ of being an Indian has not earned a paisa in the past week, desperately trying to salvage his life and being repeatedly rebuffed by the state.

On Tuesday, when he went to the Sarai Rohilla baratghar where his family is being detained by the Foreigners Regional Registration Office (FRRO) before being deported, he could catch just a glimpse of his wife, Salma, through iron grills, 150 metres away. He wasn’t even sure if she knew he was there.

The paramilitary jawan guarding the centre looked at him suspiciously and growled, “Is this your wife?” He could just nod with questions swirling in his mind and his hands clutching a packet which had warm clothes, food and medicines. The latter were meant for his younger son, Bismillah (3), who is reportedly running high fever. His elder son, Yasin, who was born in 2002, is an Indian under the law and can stay back but the family has decided to stick together.

“You have to get permission from the FRRO to hand over anything to your family. This is our rule,” said an apologetic in-charge of the baratghar whose heart seemed to have melted, somewhat.

Back at the R K Puram FRRO office, though, things were different and the rule book was thrown at him. The cell in-charge was businesslike. “Your written submission will be forwarded to higher officials. They will grant permission and get back to us. Only then will we forward your plea to Sarai Rohilla,” he told Khalid.

The official, who didn’t identify himself, had a parting shot for Khalid. “Yeh Malati koi political leader hai kya? Newspaperwale kyon pichhe par gaye?”(TOI had reported on Monday how Khalid and his family, along with 43-year-old Malati Patra, from South 24 Parganas of West Bengal, had been picked up before dawn on January 6 from their home in Faridabad. Malati was let off but her protests brought the incident to light).

With all doors being slammed on him, a distraught Khalid has now decided to travel to Kolkata to unite with his family. “I have to be with my kids. It hurts that they won’t allow me to even hand over the woollens that I had bought for my kids,” he said to TOI.

As his misery piles up, Khalid cannot figure out why the FRRO or the district police is not even letting him know when his family will be deported. “I will book my ticket but I will have to run from one station to another to find out whether they have arrived,” he said.

The officials at the cell said arrangements have to be made for the deportation. “We need to book special coaches in trains and adequate security has to be arranged. Thus, it is a decision involving people at the highest levels and taken after long deliberation,” said an FRRO official. Repeated attempts to reach Rajesh Khurana, DCP, FRRO, failed; his office said he was busy in meetings.

Meanwhile, S S Yadav, DCP (northeast), said Khalid’s allegation of having paid off the cops are being probed. “We are verifying the facts at the moment,” he said. Among the documents that Khalid has submitted to prove his status as an Indian are his driving licence, bank account details, voter ID card, auto driver ID, land ownership title in West Bengal and a court order from West Bengal for opening a bank account.

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