Tripura Police Turn Fence-Sitters; Watch Looting, Arson of Muslim Mosques

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Masihuzzama Ansari

NEW DELHI—For the last five days, Hindutva groups have been running riot in Tripura.

Muslim shrines, mosques, properties, and shops are being vandalized at will. This comes against the backdrop of attacks on minorities in Bangladesh.

Police have seemingly given a free hand to rioters who resort to looting, arson, and attacks on minority households.

At least 12 mosques in five districts have been vandalized in the last five days. Several mosques and holy books have been torched. Friday was the worst day for Muslims in Tripura. Goons openly attacked the mosques.

Locals blame Vishwa Hindu Parishad and other Hindutva groups for torching mosques and damaging the properties of Muslims. VHP and other groups carried out marches through minority inhabited areas and raised provocative slogans.

A mosque in Pal Bazaar was targeted on Saturday night, and religious books were allegedly burnt. A mosque was vandalized in Kalamcherra market on Saturday. Later, the bakery shop of Shamim Ahmed of Kailashahar police station was targeted.

On October 17, an attempt was made to attack the house of Muslim businessman Abdul Mannan by Vishwa Hindu Parishad. Moreover, efforts were made to vitiate the atmosphere on the occasion of Eid Milad-un-Nabi (PUBH).

Reports of damage to many shops and properties belonging to the Muslim community are also pouring in from different places. A mosque was targeted in Chandrapur, the assembly of Tripura Chief Minister Biplab Kumar Dev.

India Tomorrow tried to contact the Police Control Room at Agartala, but they refused to comment on arson and targeting minorities. “We cannot give such information over the phone. Talk to Delhi Control Room. We do not have orders to share any information,” an officer at the Control Room said.

The official said only MHA could share the details. “We cannot share any information with media. We are not allowed to talk to the press,” he said and dropped the phone.

Former MLA from North Tripura’s Dharmanagar Assembly and CPIM leader Amitabh Dutta said, “Such incidents have no place in a democracy. Attacks on minorities anywhere in the world are condemnable.”

CPIM leader and MLA from North Tripura’s Kadamtala-Kurti assembly, Islamuddin, said mosques were being targeted.

“Many mosques have been attacked. The atmosphere is not peaceful. Police have not yet taken any action against the rioters. A memorandum has been submitted to the administration, but no action has been taken so far. We are planning to meet the Chief Minister,” he said.

Noted artist Pradyot Manikya has taken to Twitter and appealed for peace and brotherhood.

Association for Protection of Civil Rights (APCR) and Students Islamic Organization of India (SIO) met the DM and SP of Unakoti district of Tripura and submitted a memorandum.

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