Note: Later reports suggests the main accused’s name is Parvez Gujjar and not Parvesh Gujjar.
Union Minister of Minority Affairs Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi on Tuesday expressed his disappointment over brazen communalisation of an unfortunate criminal incident that took place in Uttar Pradesh.
Sharing a picture of clarification issued by Ghaziabad Police, Naqvi tweeted that a dangerous conspiracy was hatched to tear apart the fabric of communal harmony. Naqvi also highlighted the names of the accused in the case, all of whom were Muslims, to allege that a malicious attempt was made to communalise the incident.
दुर्भाग्यपूर्ण क्रिमिनल घटना पर कम्युनल तड़का, सांप्रदायिक सौहार्द के ताने बाने को छिन्न -भिन्न करने की खतरनाक साजिश, ऐसे अपराधियों पर कानून का शिकंजा कस चुका है, फिर भी कुछ के नाम भी देख लें, साइबर साजिश के सूरमा … pic.twitter.com/HNVCynAv1T— Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi (@naqvimukhtar) June 15, 2021
Naqvi’s tweet was in reference to fake news peddled by Alt News co-founder Mohammed Zubair, who took to Twitter to claim that an elderly Muslim man, Abdul Samad Saifi, in Ghaziabad was assaulted and forced to chant ‘Jai Shri Ram’.
Alt News co-founder Mohammed Zubair tries to defame Jai Shri Ram over a petty squabble
Zubair had tweeted, “An elderly man, Sufi Abdul Samad Saifi was attacked by five goons in Loni, Ghaziabad. He was threatened at the gunpoint, beaten, assaulted, and they forcefully chopped off his beard.” In a video shared by the ‘fact-checker’, the victim could be seen being thrashed with sticks by the culprit. His beard was also cut forcibly using a scissor.
Here is a video of Abdul Samad Saifi narrating the complete incident. He claims he was forced to chant ‘Jai Sri Ram’ by the goons. pic.twitter.com/QPfJwNBJEs— Mohammed Zubair (@zoo_bear) June 14, 2021
While speaking about the matter, Abdul Samad Saifi claimed that he was about to board an autorickshaw but was stopped by the accused. He said that his face was covered with a handkerchief and taken to an undisclosed location. Saifi alleged that he was locked inside a room and brutally thrashed. He also claimed that the miscreants had forced him to chant ‘Jai Shri Ram’ at gunpoint. “They told me that they have killed several Muslims in the past and will do the same to me,” Saifi further alleged.
The video of Saifi testifying that he was assaulted in the name of Jai Shri Ram was shared by AltNews co-founder Mohammed Zubair, who has a knack of peddling lies and misinformation on social media platforms.
It is noteworthy to mention that the video of the assault does not contain any audio, which can verify the claim that Saifi was coerced into chanting ‘Jai Shri Ram’ or ‘Ram Ram’. Moreover, the victim had alleged that a gun was used by the accused to intimidate him although it wasn’t visible in the video footage.
Many social media warriors and prejudiced journalists nonetheless bought into this fiction and started sharing the video online to vilify Hindus and allege that an elderly man was browbeaten, threatened, assaulted and forced to chant ‘Jai Shri Ram’.
Ghaziabad Police issues clarification after the case is brazenly communalised on social media
In a tweet, Ghaziabad police informed that three accused had been arrested in the case. According to the police, the incident took place about 10 days ago on June 5, 2021. The victim Abdul Samad Saifi had travelled to the Loni border from Bulandshahr, where he was escorted to the house of accused Parvesh Gujjar in Banthala in Loni. After some time, the co-accused, namely, Kallu, Poli, Arif, Adil aka Mushahid arrived at Parvesh’s house and began thrashing the victim.
The victim Saifi sold amulets for a living. According to the police, the accused were miffed after the amulet proved harmful to them. Unlike what the victim had alleged, the police said that he knew the culprits for a long time. Reportedly, Saifi had sold his amulets to several people in the village through the accused. The police had initially arrested Parvesh while Adil and Kallu were nabbed on Monday (June 14). A case has been registered against them under relevant sections of the Indian Penal Code (IPC). The cops assured that the other culprits would soon be arrested.