Why compensation only to victims of 1984 anti-Sikh riots: Abu Azmi
Tuesday, 13 January 2015 - 6:55am IST | Agency: dna
Launching a scathing attack on the Narendra Modi-led BJP government at the centre, state unit chief of Samajwadi Party, Abu Azmi, on Monday, said the saffron government was discriminating against Muslims in the country by announcing compensation only to kin of Sikhs who had been killed in New Delhi in 1984 in the wake of then prime minister Indira Gandhi's murder. Azmi demanded that additional compensation be paid to the victims of the 2002 Gujarat riots also.
The central government had last October announced compensation of Rs5 lakh each to the kin of 1984 anti-Sikh riot victims, and has written to all states to disburse the fund as early as possible. This compensation is in addition to what the victims have so far received from the government and other agencies.
Azmi, who is a legislator from Govandi-Mankhurd constituency, said: "If Modi thinks that victims of 1984 riots need to be compensated additionally, then victims of 2002 Gujarat riots and 1992-93 Mumbai riots also deserve similar treatment."
Azmi said he would write to the prime minister seeking similar relief for victims of these two riots. He is set to mobilise the community to press his demand by organising a public meeting in Nagpada which has considerable Muslim population.
"Most of the victims in these two riots were Muslims and therefore they are being deliberately ignored by the BJP government. By such grave discrimination, Modi is polarising the country on religious grounds," said Azmi, who added that the kin of many of the victims of both these riots were yet to be compensated due to red-tape. He did not however provide any details.
Raising doubts about the intentions of the Modi government, Azmi said: "Modi is playing politics of compensation. Delhi elections are here and by paying additional compensation, he is seeking to secure Sikh votes."
Azmi blamed the prime minister for insulting the community. "Modi has always rated Muslims as second grade citizens. He never wears a skull-cap."
He also accused the state government of similar biases against the minority community. "Modi's discrimination policy is being followed diligently by the Fadnavis government which decided against granting reservation to Muslims in educational institutions even after the Bombay high court had okayed it."
Riot death toll
1984 anti-Sikh riots: 3,325 deaths; 2,733 were killed in Delhi alone; rest of the victims were from Uttar Pradesh, Haryana, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, etc.
1992-93 Mumbai riots: 900 deaths. 2002 Gujarat riots: 1,169 deaths and 2,548 injured.