India

Civil Society’s Fact Finding Report on Dhule Riots

BeyondHeadlines News Desk

New Delhi: Civil Society fact finding team has raised serious questions over police ‘biased’ actions in Dhule in a press conference organised today at the capital’s Press Club, although they fell short of calling it ‘preplanned.’

On January 6, as the scuffle between two communities began over eatery bill, leading to stone pelting from both sides, injuring over 200 people, including several police personnel, cops opened fire. What is interesting, however, is that while mob from both sides were engaged in stone pelting, but bullets were fired only on Muslims.

Six people have died and several others were injured, including three persons whose limbs had to be amputated. Many people who were hit by bullets were not even part of the mob, but were accidently present in the Machhibazar market at that time.

Families of victims from Dhule, who were also present, have not only alleged bias and ‘communal’ actions by police, but also accused them of coercion and threats. Nazneen, a local activist, alleged that after the fact finding team arrived, she got call from the deputy SP of Dhule, Monika Rawat making undue pressure on her.

Prof. Apoorvanand of Delhi University read out from the report prepared by the citizen’s fact finding committee and said that from the eye witness accounts it appears that the police were virtually giving covers to Hindu groups and led them towards the Muslim houses as they continued ransacking houses and burning them.

They also showed video clips, apparently recorded by the people from the camera of their mobile phones that show police ransacking houses, burning bikes and cycles. Prof. Apoorvanand added, “When you visit those burnt houses, it appears they were burnt and damaged with the intention to inflict maximum damage.” He added, although there is no conclusive proof, we cannot deny that it was a pre-planned attack.

Shabnam Hashmi of ANHAD added, “We see a pattern in last couple of years in the biased and communal actions of police from Forbesganj (in Bihar) to Gopalgarh (in Rajasthan) to now Dhule (in Mahrashtra).”

She has also accused the Maharashtra CM of “sounding highly communal,” when she spoke with him over phone on the issue as he refused to suspend the collector and SP of Dhule. She added that when he visited Dhule few days back, he had confined himself in the circuit house.

Family members of deceased recounted their grief as they pointed out that the police have not registered a single FIR against their complaints. They said when they went to complain police told them that the deceased were involved in rioting.

Hashmi also pointed out the fact that although under pressure state CM has announced compensation; it is with the caveat that those inlvoed in rioting will not get any benefit.

Asif Ali, recounted how his younger brother Imran Ali, who worked as electrician and was to be engaged the following month, was hit with two bullets, one at chest and other slightly below. The fact finding team noted that all the bullets injuries are above knees.

Prof. Apoorvanand also refuted the police claim that they had to fire as the mob was using unidentified chemical weapons against them and several of the police personnel were injured. The fact finding team has got the copy of list of patients from the civil hospital, according to which 159 police personnel came there for treatment, all of which had ‘minor’ injures from stone pelting, etc. and none of them were even required to be admitted.

Fact finding team also pointed out that while over 45 Muslims were hit with bullets, only one Hindu had bullet injuries, that too in ‘misfire,’ according to reports. Further while 35 Muslim houses have been burnt only 4 houses of Hindus have been damaged.

They also pointed out the fear amongst the Muslim community as not a single Muslim was admitted in the civil hospital but a private nursing home. According to testimonies, during the 2008 riot when Muslims rushed to the civil hospital they were chased out and beaten and hence fearing backlash, they avoided it this time.

The citizens ‘Fact Finding Committee,’ consisting of social activist Shabnam Hashmi of ANHAD, Prof. Ram Puniyani of All India Secular Forum, Prof. Apoorvanand of Delhi University, and Advocate Nihalsing B Rathod of Human Rights Law Network, among others visited Dhule on January 13 and 14, 2013.

The fact finding team has demanded the compensation package to be enhanced in lines with the compensation generally offered and suspension and persecution offering police personnel. They also added that although the judicial enquiry has been ordered, from the past experiences, they would want a time bound fair probe within a month.

Here is the full text of the Civil Society’s Fact Finding Report

Introduction

Dhule has been in news for past 10 days. It has been reported in the media that, a small altercation in Dhule led to an event leading to violence between Hindus and Muslims. As such death of 6 innocent youth and injuries to several more and massive loss of properties, burning of houses has taken place. The worst part of the episode is that all this has taken place with police force being very much around. Contrary to official reports, the people in the area stated that the behavior of police was very biased against the Muslim minorities. All the youth who died were Muslims. Most of the houses which were burnt belonged to the Muslims.

In the light of the disturbing reports and communications from the local activists we  decided that a citizen fact finding committee should visit the Dhule, to investigate and present the facts objectively.

The citizens Fact Finding Committee consisting, of Shabnam Hashmi– social activist, ANHAD Delhi, Prof Ram Puniyani of All India Secular Forum, Prof Apoorvanand of Delhi University, Adv Nihalsing B Rathod– Human Rights Law Network, Manan Trivedi, Dev Desai, Tanvi Soni, Arma from ANHAD, Gujarat and Azhar from Jalgaon,  visited  Dhule on 13th and 14th  January 2013.

The Committee met several social, religious and political activists, government officials including the district magistrate, victims, families of the deceased and injured, and the people from different walks of life. It also visited the spot of the incident; the affected areas and the Hospitals on 14th January 2013. The committee procured the recordings of the violence which had taken place in the city. This report is based on the testimonies of these people, the records from the hospitals and its own observation in the area where houses have been burnt.

The committee found that the affected area, which was constantly referred as minority area was barricaded to separate it from the Hindu dominated areas. We found temporary police posts on the other side of the barricades (Hindu Majority area). We were told that the curfew which was enforced after the violence; was now relaxed from 9am to 5pm. Police did not prevent people from crossing the barricades from either side. Outwardly life looked normal. We were told that curfew had affected the livelihood of people who worked in the power looms which is the main source of living for majority of the Muslims as work had to be stopped at 5 in the evening. In normal times the power looms kept working round the clock. We also found that even in normal times the area also suffered from huge load shedding, making it impossible for the power looms to work. The stoppage of work is leading to the disruption of life.

There were differing versions of the cause of violence on 6 January. We were told that it was largely a result of the insensitive handing of a minor quarrel by the police. It was clear from the statements of both Hindus and Muslims that tension could have been diffused easily had police taken proper steps to diffuse the tension, which was building up. It did not intervene and told the people to settle the dispute by themselves. The police allowed crowds to assemble from both sides. One can see from the recordings that mobs which assembled started confronting each other with stones. We were also told that the first incidence took place at around 2 to 2.15 pm and mobs from both sides started assembling soon after that. It is clear that both Hindus and Muslims had indulged in stone throwing. What is perplexing is that the police decided to move into the Muslims areas with Hindu mob behind them. Police started firing indiscriminately at Muslims.

As per the testimony of victims and eyewitnesses the police did not make any primary effort to disperse the crowds. It did not use public address system to alert the crowd, nor did it use lathi or teargas shells before going for firing. The residents felt very aggrieved that the police resorted to firing in response to stone throwing. It was reported that the firing lasted for more than two hours and was stopped around 6.30 PM. This point was confirmed by the District Magistrate.

The police firing was intended not to disperse the mob. All the bullet injuries are above the knee, in the abdomen, chest, neck, back and face. The attitude of the police against Muslims is also evident from the recordings as they are found pounding on the motorcycles in the curfew hours when there was nobody on the streets. Media reported and District Collector told us that the police had no option but to open fire as they were attacked with lethal chemicals and many of them suffered grievous injuries when they were trying to control the mobs. This claim is not supported by the Civil hospital record which describes the injuries suffered by the police personnel as minor who were discharged after first aid and there are just a very few cases of minor burn injuries..

Forty two people suffered bullet injuries, six died. Legs of two of the injured had to be amputated. None of the injured went to the civil hospital. We were told that the Muslims avoid going to civil hospital due to their experience of experience of the 2008 riots. In 2008 Muslims were attacked by Hindus when they tried to go to the civil hospital as it falls in a Hindu dominated locality. Due to the experience of 2008 this time, all the injured were taken to private hospitals.

It was reported that none of the injured was taken to the hospital by the police. We were also told by the relatives of those killed that they were not allowed to lodge FIRs. They were told that the deceased had already been made accused and were treated as rioters. The injured have not been able to muster courage to file FIRs, nor have the owners of the damaged property been able to do so.

More than 35 Muslim houses were looted, burnt and destroyed. Destruction of these houses was complete. All of it seems to have been done with clinical precision. We also found four Hindu households burnt, one of them burnt totally. While Muslims are ready to name the attackers, Hindus told us that they did not want to name anybody although they know the attackers.

The looting, burning and destruction of Muslim houses was done by mobs under the protection of the police. In one of the recordings, a senior police officer is seen exhorting the mobs to move forward and attack. The police is also seen standing silently while houses are being burnt.  What the police did was to drive away the Muslims by firing, leaving their houses unprotected and vulnerable.

It was also reported that the area of incident and firing was cleaned with water the very next day without any Panchnama having been made.

We found no evidence of relief being provided to the uprooted families who had to flee bare handed from their houses. The DM told us that they were provided with ration through NGOs but was unable to explain how the ration was supposed to be cooked as the victims had no utensils with them to cook it. He also found it natural and sufficient that they were being taken care of by the community-fellows and there was no special need for administration to pitch in.

The fact that when our committee visited the area neither the chief minister, nor the home minister felt it necessary to pay a visit to Dhule in the wake of this violence. This fact has made the Muslims very bitter. Several calls to offices of the CM and HM for an appointment by the Fact Finding Committee yielded no results. Muslims feel uncared for and left to fend for themselves. The announcement by a section of the business community, engineers and lawyers that the police action should not be investigated has also made them wary.  More than compensation, they want justice to be done and with these threats they feel that justice might be compromised. The political process of confidence building is absent leaving the field open for all kinds to forces to fill the void. It should be a matter of concern that since 2008, this has been the third major violence and Muslims feel that they are being hounded by the police. The fact, as reported by many; that the constables have not been transferred for more than fifteen years is also to be noted. It is evident that the police is biased against the Muslims and all minds of anti-Muslim stereotypes impact their mindset and action.

Dhule, despite ‘only’ six deaths is a mirror to the nation and our response would also show whether there exists a social, civil and political resolve to protect the constitutional rights of minorities in India or not.

FINDINGS:

  1. This violence could have been prevented, had the police acted in time.
  2. While stone pelting was done by members of both the communities, the police action was selective and directed against Muslims only.
  3. The police did not follow the prescribed protocol to control the mob. Police firing was excessive and was done with an intent to kill.
  4. All bullets were above the knee, majority of the bullets were above the waist, many of them in the chest, neck and face. All six deaths were because of the police firing.
  5. Majority of the victims of the police firing were left unattended by the police and were taken to hospitals by friends.
  6. 159 police personnel were taken to the hospital out of which only 18 were admitted is evident from the record of the civil hospital (attached with this report).  All the injuries suffered by the police were minor in nature due to stone pelting.
  7. The burning and looting of Muslim household and shops was done by the Hindu mobs in the present of the police personnel and killings were done by the police. From the video footage obtained by us it is clear that Police also indulged in burning Muslim houses and destroying their property.
  8. Fire Brigade was not allowed to come to the Muslim locality to douse the fire.
  9. No relief camps were set up for those Muslims and Hindus who lost their houses (approximately 40 Muslim families and 4 Hindu families), no immediate relief provided by the State. Some food grains were distributed by the Red Cross.
  10. The victims were threatened when they tried to register FIRs and no FIRs were registered.

DEMANDS

  1. IMMEDIATE COMMISSIONING OF JUDICIAL ENQUIRY INTO THE WHOLE INCIDENT OF JANUARY 6, 2013 IN DHULE, MAHARASHTRA WITH ESPECIAL FOCUS ON ROLE OF THE POLICE.
  2. SUSPENSION OF THE DM , SP AND OTHER OFFICERS RESPONSIBLE FOR THEIR ACTS OF OMMISSION AND COMMISSION WITH IMMEDIATE EFFECT
  3. ANNOUNCEMENTOF RELIEF AND REHABILITATION PACKAGE INCLUDING THE OPENING OF A RELIEF CAMP IMMEDIATELY FOR THOSE WHOSE HOUSES HAVE BEEN UPROOTED   (25 LAKHS TO THE NEXT OF KIN OF THOSE KILLED, 15 LAKHS FOR THOSE DISABLED FOR LIFE, 10 LAKHS  FOR THOSE INJURED WITH POLICE BULLETS, SUITABLE COMPENSATION TO THOSE WHOSE HOUSES, PROPERTY, BUSINESS HAS BEEN BURNT, LOOTED, DESTROYED AFTER ASSESSMENT BY A COMPETENT AGENCY ALONG WITH MEMBERS OF CIVIL SOCIETY AND NGOS).
  4. PROSECUTION OF ALL THOSE POLICEMEN WHO ARE INVOLVED IN KILLING PEOPLE AND DESTROYING THEIR PROPERTY.
  5. GOVERNMENT JOB TO ONE PERSON IN THE FAMILY OF THOSE KILLED / disabled for life IN POLICE BULLETS.
  6. IMMEDIATE LODGING OF FIRs IN ALL CASES OF DEATH, INJURED, PROPERTY LOSS ETC.
  7. IMPLEMENTATION OF TRANSFERPOLICY FOR THE POLICEPERSONNALE WHICH HAS BEENTOTALLY DISREGARDED IN DHULE.
  8. ESTABLISHMENT OF AN EXTENTION CENTRE OF THE GOVERNMENTHOSPITAL WITH ALL FACILITIES IN THE MUSLIM DOMINATED AREA.
  9. LIFTING OF CURFEW WITH IMMEDIATE EFFECT AND RESUMPTION OF NORMAL WORKING HOURS ESPECIALLY IN POWER LOOM SECTOR.
  10.  SETTING UP OF A COMMITTEE TO STUDY THE DEVELOPMENT NEEDS OF THE CITY INCLUDING JOB OPPORTUNITIES FOR YOUTH.
  11. IMMEDIATE STEPS TO BE TAKEN TO DE-TOXIFY THE MINDSETS OF THE POLICE AT THE STATE LEVEL, PROGRAMMES TO SENSITISE THEM ON CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHTS, DEMOCRACY, SECULaRALISM.
  12. TO INVITE NATIONAL NGOS WORKING ON COMMUNAL HARMONY TO HELP SET UP A STRUCTURE AT THE LEVEL OF MOHALLAS FOR REGULARINTERACTION OF LOCAL PEOPLE ANDLEADERS OF ALL COMMUNITIES, FORMATION OF MOHALLA COMMITTEES.

Testimony/ Depositions

Rukmuddin

            I work in sessions court, and helped in conducting post mortem of the diseased. Incidence took place on 6th of January 2013. Injured were admitted in 3 hospitals across the city 1. SHWAS Hospital 2. LOKMANYA Hospital and Government hospital. Most of the Injured left the hospitals on their own fearing police action or inclusion of their names in the list of accused.

Chand a 30 year old rickshaw driver is critical, he has been shifted to hospital at Pune, there are more patients who are critical. In total approximately there are 72-80 injured people who belong to Muslim community.

A Muslim rickshaw driver was not paid his fare of 20 rs by the passengers. When demanded,  passengers started beating him. Driver called his friends for help. Friends and driver approached police chowky located at Macchi bazar. When police officers refused to take the complaint, quarrel began with the police officers, neighbors belonging to Maratha caste gathered in the police chowky started to intervene, which resulted in collision between groups

Mr. Koli who is station in charge of Azad Nagar Police Station ordered lathi charge. Then SRPF was called . In the meantime situation became worse and crowds from both the communities were pelting stones at each other.

Firing started at around beginning of ASAR NAMAZ (4:15pm) and continued till MAGHRIB NAMAZ (6:10PM). First person who succumbed to firing was a 16 year old boy.

In 2008 riots, a corporator belonging to Muslim community was attacked while he was trying to hospitalize injured at that time. Hence Muslims opted to admit in aforesaid three hospital, instead of going to civil hospital.

Fire brigade team was standing behind the police officers and did not take steps to extinguish the fire. Curfew is still going on, but they have started giving relaxation between 9am to 3pm, which is being increased by an hour every day.

To my knowledge, 72 rounds have been fired by the police officers. To my knowledge there is no injury to any Hindu person. Mrs. Monica Raut is the DYSP.

City police station incharge, Mr. Ram Somvanshi, had a misfire, during the riots which resulted into injury to a Hindu. Who was standing with him. It was immediately clarified by him that it was a misfire.

Superintendent of police Mr. Pradip Deshpande, arrived 20 minutes after SRPF had arrived. Prior to this firing had begun. 1 platoon from Jalgaon and 2 from Malegaon were called in. Maximum 500 people comprised the crowd at the time of incidence. There are around 35/36 people injured due to bullets. Majority of people were shot on upper part of the body.

At around 4:45Pm fire brigade had arrived, and 4:30 tear gas was used.

Prior to 2008 there was peace in the city, such thing had never happened before. That was the time when Dhule saw first police firing incidence.Second time in 2009/10 again there was conflict of Muslims and police officers. And this is the third time.

There is no compensation as such even though CM has promised to provide the same. Panchanamas are done still there is no interim or any type of relief granted.

Hindu corporators have opposed, judicial probe into the matter, and have threatened to come on street if any judicial inquiry demand is met with.

Firings done by both police officers and SRPF.

Nisar Ahmed Tamboli

Shops and houses of Muslims were being torched by the Hindus, police officers in their submission have mentioned that Muslims were running away. Police officers were targeting vital organs of the people, this can be seen in the video. Police officers are lying that 122 police officers are injured. In one such video police officer can be seen pretending to be injured, in which he is talking normally and on sight of senior police officer pretended to be very critical.

Muslims are their in the ICU who have received bullet injuries. They were admitted in ASTHA hospital as well. There were no women in the mob however women have received bullet injuries, during the curfew hours police officers can be seen vandalizing houses and destructing property that can be seen from videos.

Police officers have injured 4 women, 2 of them have received bullet injury and 2 have been beaten up by lathis.

Hindus were using acid, after 7 pm people started looting houses. 35-40 houses were looted or torched, in addition to 25 shops. Government is not ready to give any loss statement of minority.

There were hardly 300/400 people in the mob including both the sides. Approximatey at around 2:45 pm firing started. Police were present at the incidence.  Of the 6 deaths only 2 have tried to registered FIR, however others are not coming forward to complain due to fear.

Some local political leaders belonging dissuaded people from registering FIR against police officers. Senior Maharashtra Police officer recorded statements of people, and gave clean chit to police officer saying, they were compelled to open fire.

It is being alleged that 40ton stones have been collected which is a blatant lie.Rioters brought out LPG cylinders and blew up houses, while police officers were present.

There is connection of this incidence with 2008 riots, in incidence at Nanda Hindu rioters were bailed out from court within half an hour. A month thereafter riots broke up in Dhule, when 11 Muslims were paraded across the town and their beard were shaven forcibly.CM had promised to compensate people also said that there will be no injustice with anyone, however there is no action on any front as such.

Mob could have been easily controlled by the police officers had they have the desire to do that.

3 of the injured are transported to Pune who are critical, patient who are not fit for discharge are running away from the hospital fearing action by the police officers. Of the 3 injured 2 have gone through amputation of their limbs. Amputation was conducted in NIRMAYA hospital Dhule. Shekh Chand is one of the patient.

There were bullets apart from police bullets, since some bullets were coming from top of the building in Hindu area. A Chiwada stall owner shot from his countrymade pistol (KATTA).

In 2008 they used the same modus operandi, it was again a situation where police officers were attacking Muslims where police officers were supported by Hindus.

Macchi bazar is a place where people come to purchase groceries, meat, chicken, eggs, in most time of the days.

SRPF camp is located 3 km from the spot, before SRPF came, 15-20 armed police officers were present at the spot. Before SRPF has arrived mob had calmed down and there was no need of opening fire.

Sunil Jain from BJP and Rajendra Gujar from Shivsena, had threatened advocates from taking vakalatnama of Muslims in 2008.

40 of the 650 advocates in bar association, have given a representation to the officers, justifying act of the police officers and opposing any judicial inquiry of the police officers.

Police officers claiming injuries is a drama, police officers are pretending to be injured and got themselves admitted thereafter. All people residing near Bhola Wagh’s house own personal weapon illegally.

Nasreen

Police officers first started firing, then released the tear gas and at the end did lathi charge. Hindu leaders have their own country made pistols. 116 rounds of bullets were fired by police officers. Police chowky is normally manned by 3 to 4 police officers. Houses in macchi basar were blown up by using lpg cylinders.

Meat shops are located in macchi bazar, where people come drunk and tease people in the neighborhood, sometimes they even refuse to pay for meat they take.

Pradip Deshpande is Superintendent of Police, and is placed here since past 2 years, enjoys support by local bar association.

Local tv channels were stopped from telecasting news of riots since they were telecasting news showing police atrocities. Without conducting any panchnama police officers made municipal corporation to clean off the incidence spot, even after opposition by the locals and Muslim corporators.

A mobile shop owned by Muslim youth was robbed while curfew was in force, and reportedly by police officers.

Masood Ansari

I have a shop in the macchi bazar area. To my knowledge after the fight between the restaurant owner and Muslim boy took place. Few Muslim boys approached police officers sitting in at police chowky. Instead of registering their complaint, they suggested Muslims to face Hindus if they have guts.

Rajkumar and Pawar are the two police constables who were present at the police chowky.

42 have faced bullet injury. 3 people have faced amputation. And very sadly 6 have died.

32 houses of muslims were burned down, whereas only 3 houses of Hindus only have been burned.

Police conducted panchnama, but no panchnama is done by tehsil department as such.

Only bullet injury to a Hindu person (kailash Wagh) is claimed to have happened due to misfire from Mr Somwanshis’ gun

Muktar Ahmad Mohammad Hasar

My family is of 16 members where 4 families stay together. Moment when rioters started to attack my house, we ran and took refuge in my relatives house.  My house was burnt down by the police with the help of Hindus. At around 5:15 they burnt down my house. I gave a written complaint to police officers where I have mentioned names of those I have seen in the mob and I know them, their names are Bajrang Maharaj, 2 sons of lukka gannewala, Gotu Maratha, and Mannu chaudhari.

Ulma committee stopped me from registering complaint against police officers, saying they will not register the complaint if they put police officers name in it.

We were planning to buy a house in the neighborhood, for the same I had collected 4.5lac rs, in addition to that there were jewellary of my four daughter in laws, in total loss goes to an approximately 10 lac rs.

15-20 rioters forcefully broke the door, and entered in the house with huge kerosene cans. Police officers could have saved my house. Material inside the cupboard was robbed and subsequently my house was burnt.

No officers of government have visited my house as such.

No panchnama has been conducted by tehsil department.

Ansari Massudi Mohammad Alias

Between 2:30 and 3 there was reported disturbance in the area, so we chose to escort kids and women to safer area, and came back and started to extinguish fire in the house of Muktar Ahmad Mohammad Hasar, by pouring water from our window, seeing that rioters started pelting stones on me. Even a police officer shot bullets on me, one of which struck the wall of my house. Later on they entered into my house through window and opened the door to help bring huge kerosene cans inside, and set my house on fire.

Police were playing role of spectators and were not extending any help. Money which I had saved for my daughter’s wedding was kept in the cupboard also I was collecting other necessary things slowly and was storing them in the cupboards.

“Ek wakt tha jab hum logoki madad kiya karate they

aaj wo wakt hai jab log hame khairat de ke jaa rahe hain”

Fire brigade came from Malegaon, whole house carried electricity current and hence fire brigade refused to act, citing its inability. Fire brigade had come very late in the night.

No panchnama has been conducted by tehsil department.

Ansari Asif iqbal

I stay on the upper storey of the house, they burned down this portion of the house as well. In addition to that a wall of my house has totally broken down, which was in dialpated position.  In my complaint to police officers I have given names of those rioters who I saw setting my house on fire their names are 1. Bajarang Chudewala 2. Mohan bajilal Raka 3. Raman Gawade 4. Shailesh Jaiswal 5. Sachin Raswala and his brothers.

I have suffered loss of 12/13 lacs. Wedding stuffs collected for my sisters wedding were also destroyed. There are 4 members in the family who are between 0-12 years of age. We are not provided with any type of relief by the government. Only red cross organization has given us shawls. No panchnama or survey is conducted by the talati or collector. Police officers have done panchnama but did not provide us copy of the same.

madinabee w/o Jalil Ahmad Md hasul

I was alone at home, when the incidence took place. Sensing the fear I along with the tenants took refuge in my relatives house, there are 8 members in the house, including 2 children ranging 0-4 years. There was jewelry worth 2 lakhs and other cash in the house, they used petrol bombs for setting my house ablaze. Incidence happened after 5 pm.

We are left with only clothes which are on our body. No relief has come from government. No one came to conduct survey or punchnama of our houses. Police officers recorded our names on Panchnama but did not take our signatures. Also did not provide us copy even after demand.   

I know Shivam tailor set my house on fire. I have suffered loss of over 20 lacks. We are staying here for the / past 6 generation.

Mansoor Khan

I am a tenant and I run a chappals shop in Macchi market. Rioters have set my house and shop both on fire. The shop I was running was also in a rented premises. I had a stock of over 3 lacks in the store. All the utensils and necessary household stuffs are absolutely destroyed in fire and my shop is totally gutted. We are left with nothing but clothes that we were wearing. No help has come from anywhere.

Yusuf Abbas khatik

I own this house. We are staying here for three generations. At around 3:30pm sensing fear we chose to take refuge in a nearby building. I have leather business, which is daily basis work. No fire brigade came to save our house despite the fact that we repeatedly requested police officers to help us. Instead police officers were beating up those who tried to extinguish the fire. Some youth in the neighborhood tried to save the house by pouring water but were prevented by police officers.

Right now we do not have any place to stay, since our entire house is destroyed. We are staying at a relative’s house. My daughter was to get married in this April but now it seems impossible, given the circumstance we are in right now. No help has been extended by government even after the incidence. No Panchnama is by Tehsiladar is done except police Panchanama, there also they did not take my signature or give me a copy of it. No other government officer has visited my house. I could see approximately a crowd of 350.

Chotehaji Shamsulhah- vice chairman of Jamiat-ul-Ulma-e-hind

No relief camp has been set up by government. For the past 8 days we are requesting officers to provide relief, but no such thing has happened. Police officers supported Hindu rioters. Had we been culprits we would not have sought judicial probe/ no minister bothered to pay a visit, even after 6 people have lost their lives.

In an incidence at Mumbai where a hawker died due to heart attack after he was chased by a police officers, government suspended him, here in contrary people have been killed by the police officers themselves still no action is taken. Pelting stones on police officers did happen from both sides but instead of taking action for crowd management they chose to fire indiscriminately on people of one community only.

None of the police officer is injured due to weapon but by stones. 3 Hindu houses were burned in Madhavpura. Suresh Shetty who is the guardian minister has visited.

Motor pumps were being prevented by police officers from being taken to burning houses. Dhule fire brigade was held up in Hindu locality. Police officers have been spreading rumours that acid attacks were done by Muslims, which is not at all true. We tried to stop them from clearing the area without conducting any Puncanama, which was resisted by officers.

Jivan Sonune is municipal commissioner and Manjula Gavit is the mayor and comes from BJP.

In past 15 years they have not transferred any single police officers. We have noticed that the  new recruits are more brutal and violent.

Out of 67 corporators 18 Muslim corporators have tendered resignation seeking judicial probe.

45 days back there was VHP camp where they taught how to use weapon.

Merchant organization has also supported police action and has given their memorandum justifying the act and opposing judicial probe.

Abeda Sheikh Naseer

My son named Aseem aged 24 years was killed by police officers by shooting him in the neck. We were not permitted to visit him or see him.  He was the sole bread earner of the family. He used to sell eggs in whole sail. On the day of incidence he had gone to distribute eggs in the Macchi market.

Police officers named Wagh refused to acknowledge our complaint, he did so only when he was approached by a social activist. Koli who is incharge said, “since your son was a rioter he is an accused and we won’t register FIR of a rioters death”

No compensation as such is granted. No minister or officer from government has till now come meet us. We are not provided with post mortem report.

Hasan Shah Sardar Shah

Mohammad Rizwan was my son, he was 22 years old. I run a cloth shop and had sent Rizwan to get carry bags from the market. Around 4:30pm I came to know that he was shot. He had bullet injuries on his hip and on thigh. I have two sons and one daughter.

We reached hospital at 5:30pm but we were not permitted to visit him for two days. No treatment was given to him, no doctors were present around him. He was being attended by a nurse instead. All those who went to ASTHA hospital have died. No papers pertaining to my son are given to me. Rizwan got married 8 months back. Doctors were saying that he is not critical and will suffer no permanent disability as well.

He died on 8th January 6 am.

No one came to see us from government side. No help given by government. Bullet had passed through his hip. They conducted his autopsy but did not give us papers.

No compensation is given as such by government.

Rahul wagh

There is no source of livelihood in the town hence illegal business in booming here.

VHP organised a camp here to train weapon use to the youth.

Prior to Godhra incidence there used to be riot analysis, which would bring out reasons of the riot. However that practice is discounted thereafter.

RSS conducts Shastra Pooja every year. Also they have established Hindu Raksha Samiti. The atmosphere is becoming highly communalized and there is infiltration of RSS mindset in the police. I belong to Hindu community and we have been trying to help the victims but we are targeted.

There is a need for secular organizations to work in Dhule before it becomes too late.

Suresh Chuadhary

I run tea stall in front of the Machchi Bazar police chowky. On 6th January Muslims robbed my shop and looted all the material inside apart from that they burned down my two wheeler and cycles. Subhan bhangarwala did this to my shop.

Police officers first did lathi charge, then used tear gas, and then opened fire. They first used the rubber bullets. Police officers were being targeted by both communities.

No announcement was made on loudspeaker

Rajkumar Patil and Shivaji Pawar were present at police chowky when the incidence triggered.

My statement was not recorded. Tahsil and police Panchnama is done. Debris of the destroyed vehicle was seized by police officers.

Sanjay Kale

My Duro bike, and daughters cycle were burned by rioters. Tehsildar Panchanma and police panchnama took place on 7th jan.

Najmabee Shaikh hasil Shaikh

My house was burned by the rioters, I stay in the locality where there is mix population of Hindus and Muslims.

Police and tehsil Punchnama was conducted on 7th Jan. Fir is not registered.

Irfan Ali Liyakat Ali

My house was burnt prior to firing took place. It happened sometime between 2:30 to 3 om on 6th Jan. Punchnama is done by both police and Tehsildar. I had kept 50000 cash in the cupboard, and there was other jewellery which was robbed by rioters.

They have used crackers to set it ablaze. I do not know who exactly burnt my house.

Dinesh Ratilal Sonar

I am a daily wages worker, and stay in rented premises, they have burnt my house, there is nothing left except cloths on our body.Police and tehsil Panchnama is already conducted.

I was not present here when incidence took place hence can not tell when exactly it happened. Also I do not know who did this.

Abbas Shah Suleman Shah Fakir

My son Yunus who was 22 year old, used to work as casual labour. He was shot at Macchi bazar. Police officer did not allow us to meet my son, when he was hospitalized. We were informed about it by the local people. At around 2 am on 7th January 2013 doctors called me, and told me that Yunus needs to be shifted to KEM Mumbai. He had a bullet injury in his throat. We shifted him to Mumbai in a private ambulance, no ambulance or expenses were given by government. He died in Mumbai.

I have given my complaint against police officers but do not know if they have registered my complaint as such. Police officer Patil refused to accept the complaint, then we went to Paradhi picket chowky, who also refused to accept it. It was acknowledged only after social activists intervened.

He was admitted in hospital by local people not by police, doctors did not provide immediate treatment to Yunus but were waiting for police permission, which caused substantial delay in providing him treatment.

Bullets were removed on Friday 11th. No officer or minister has come to meet us.We do not have autopsy report of Yunus. No compensation is given as such.

Yogita mahale

We stay in this rented premise. At around 3:30pm our house was attacked. I managed to escape by jumping a huge wall. They entered with huge cans of kerosene and set ablaze my house. I had my 70 gram golden jewelry and cash kept in the house, which was robbed and all other things were set afire.

Accused are those who normally stand in Masjid chowk and others are from Gali No 6.

Police and tehsil Panchnama is done. No compensation is provided as such. We do not even have utensils to cook the food.

Jayantrao Shekhar Lokhande

 I build this house on last Diwali from the money I received out of service expiry. They burt whole house, and did not spare even school bags of kids.They normally form groups of people. First group starts vandalizing houses. 2nd group starts pelting stone. 3rd group starts burning houses. And 4th groups burns the vehicle. They hold violent parades during Eid and Moharram.

Sayarabee Ansari

I am 36 year old. I was shot in the shoulder from backside. I was taken to SHWAS hosptital by local people, where I was kept for 5 days.

During the whole course, I was not permitted to see my family. My youngest child needs breast feeding, police officers didn’t allow him also to be brought to me for five days. Neighbours and relatives fed him packet milk.

We did not register complaint since we are not provide with any documents by the doctors, to prove that we were in hospitals. Police officers don’t listen to us. And they refuse to take any complaints.

They gave me anesthesia when they removed bullet from my shoulder.

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