On October 18, 2019, it was the first time we Indians realised that ISIS ideology has not only impacted the terrorist organisations and their operating style but the individuals as well. Kamlesh Tiwari, the founder of Hindu Samaj Party was attacked at his residence in Lucknow by two Muslim Youths (Later identified as Ashfaq Shaikh and Moinuddin Khurshid Pathan) and brutally murdered. Tiwari was stabbed more than 15 times on his face, neck and chest and his throat was slit in ISIS style. Finally shot in the face wherein the bullet was found on backside of the skull.
Murders are not new to India and UP but the context of this case and the way it was declared and executed has shaken the conscience of ordinary Indians. To understand this case let’s revisit the sequence of the events.
Abusing other’s religion and ideology is not new to Indian politics and Azam Khan of Samajwadi Party is one of the notorious names. On December 2, 2015, Azam Khan made an ugly statement that all the RSS leaders are homosexuals and that’s why they don’t marry. The reaction to such comment was obvious and that too from Hindu leaning organisations and individuals. Kamlesh Tiwari who claimed to be the President of Hindu Mahasabha retaliated to Azam Khan’s statement and on a social media post wrote that the prophet was the first homosexual of the world. This retaliatory remark from Tiwari outraged the Muslim community and lakhs of Muslims came on the streets of different parts of India protesting violently. Most of them were demanding death penalty for Tiwari. And most of them were demanding beheading of him. The slogan was “Gustaakh-e-Nabi ki ek hi sazaa, Sar tan se juda”. The community also demanded that blasphemy laws as per Sharia and Islam should be imposed in India just like other Islamic countries. Kamlesh Tiwari was arrested the very next day of the incident on December 3, 2015 by the then Samajwadi Party govt. National Security Act was imposed on Tiwari and charges under sections 153-A and 295-A were slapped against him.
But the Muslim community was not satisfied with this. They wanted death penalty for him and nothing less as per Islamic law. The case of Tiwari proceeded in the courts and in October 2016 the Allahabad High Court revoked the NSA imposed on Tiwari and subsequently he was released on bail. Hardliner Muslims continued to keep their demand of his beheading/death penalty and took the vow to kill him whenever he is out. Many bounties were also announced for his beheading.
After coming out from jail Tiwari founded Hindu Samaj Party in 2017 and carried out his political activities in a democratic manner. He also contested general elections in 2019 from Faizabad but lost. Police sources also claim that Tiwari was possibly on the hit list of many Islamists as well as ISIS for his remarks on Prophet Mohammad. The two ISIS suspects arrested by the Gujarat police in 2017 Obaid Mirza and Qasim had revealed that during interrogation.
The assailants of Tiwari on October 18, 2019 came in saffron Kurtas. One of them Ashfaq Shaikh befriended Tiwari on social media with a Hindu Name. He had forged the Aadhaar card of one of his Hindu colleague Rohit Solanki from a pharmaceuticals company where he used to work. He introduced himself to Tiwari as Rohit Solanki and came to meet him on the pretext of joining his Hindu Samaj Party. They brought Knife and Pistols in sweet packets. They sent his assistant out to bring some stuff and then executed the plan. One assailant slit his throat and the other shot him in the face. Police identified the assailants from a CCTV footage. Later on, they found that the sweet boxes they had brought were from Gujarat and that led the police team to Surat involving Gujarat police. Three conspirators named Faizan Yusuf Bhai, Maulana Mohsin Shaikh and Rashid Ahmed Khurshid Ahmed Pathan were arrested from Surat later, who were involved in planning Tiwari’s assassination. Two Maulvis named Mohammad Mufti Naeem Kazmi and Imam Maulana Anwarul Haq were arrested from Bijnor. The duo had announced bounty on Tiwari’s beheading of 1.5Cr in 2016. One person was arrested by the Maharashtra ATS from Nagpur named Syed Asim Ali. One more Maulvi was arrested from Bareilly who helped the two assailants to escape. Later on, the two assailants were also arrested from Gujarat-Rajasthan border. They had fled to Nepal but had to come back after they ran out of money.
Now one thing is very clear that all these people who are involved in Kamlesh Tiwari’s brutal ISIS style murder and those who are supporting them don’t have any faith in Indian Constitution or the rule of law. They’re the believers of ISIS style rule. And the irony is what Kamlesh Tiwari did in retaliation to Azam Khan’s remarks are being done by many in India for years and they are made Hero by one section of the society and the other section doesn’t react to them as they reacted to Tiwari’s remarks in 2015.
To conclude above incident one must agree that though they are minority but stands unitedly when it comes to such brutality. We the so called majority however have always shown tolerance towards such acts against religious atrocities.
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