On 15th October, 2016, a JNU student and a resident of Badaun named Najeeb went missing from his hostel after he was assaulted by members of the ABVP, the student wing of RSS. Najeeb’s phone and laptop was found on his bed, and all of his shoes were there in the room. Four months since Najeeb’s involuntary disappearance, the ABVP members have not been touched by the Delhi Police. The Delhi Police deliberately lost the first few days that were crucial for investigation and collection of forensic evidence. JNU students tried to look for Najeeb, but couldn’t find any trace. They held several protests asking the police to search the campus, interrogate and arrest the ABVP members, investigate their phone records, search their residences, etc. Forget investigation, the Delhi Police did not even put posters outside the JNU campus. The Delhi Police is directly controlled by the Home Ministry, which is headed by BJP’s Rajnath Singh. The deliberate inaction on part of the police can be attributed to the fact that ABVP members are involved. Instead, Najeeb’s mother, Fatima Nafees, has knocked every door seeking justice. However, apart from a couple of MPs, no MP has even attempted to raise the question in the Parliament. Many politicians say that raising Najeeb’s issue at the time of election may polarise people. But Najeeb’s mother believes otherwise. Fatima Nafees says that, *”I have received support from Hindus and Muslims alike. We cannot equate ABVP’s hooliganism with the behaviour of all Hindus. This is not a question of Hindu versus Muslim. This is a question of justice versus injustice, and most people are on the side of justice.”* Fatima Nafees has called for a march in Lucknow on the 12th of February, 2017 at 1 pm from parivartan chowk to gandhi pratima , after leading a successful rally in her hometown, Badaun. She has also addressed students across the country who raised the issue of Justice for Najeeb. Her only demand is that police, administration and government should pull up their socks and look for her son.
The rally is likely to be joined by students, civil society members and prominent student activists. Among the people expected to join the rally are JNUSU President Mohit Pandey, AMUSU President Faizul Hasan,SIO National Secreatry Azharuddin, AMUSU General Secretary Nabeel Usmani, former JNUSU President Kanhaiyya Kumar, former JNUSU General Secretary Rama Naga, former JNUSU Vice-President Shehla Rashid, former JNUSU President Akbar Chawdhary, JNU student activist Umar Khalid, SIO leader labeed Aliya and Social Activist Nadeem Khan, and several others.
JNUSU President, Mohit Pandey, is on the 11th day of hunger strike against the UGC Gazette Notification which is detrimental for the inclusive composition of JNU, but he is determined to join the rally, despite his health condition. On the 9th day of his hunger strike, Mohit Pandey joined the Badaun rally and walked for am hour before addressing the rally. Mohit Pandey hails from Lucknow, and had earlier met UP CM, Akhilesh Yadav, requesting him to initiate a probe into the matter of Najeeb’s disappearance, because of the biased nature of Delhi Police. Asked whether he is supporting any political party in the upcoming election, he categorically said that, *”The election is simply a coincidence. For us, the matter of Najeeb’s disappearance neither started, nor will it end with the election
We have been protesting for four months now, and will continue to do so. But we do want Najeeb’s issue to be an election issue. Whichever party will take up this issue sincerely, the students will support them. But we urge the people of UP to keep BJP out of UP. They communalised our peaceful campus and made a boy from UP, who had gone to JNU to study, with dreams in his eyes, disappear. We can’t allow BJP to communalise UP.”*
It is a matter of shame that the UP Police has filed an FIR against 150 people, including Fatima Nafees and Mohit Pandey,Nahas Mala(SIO National President) for the peaceful rally held in Badaun. One of the reasons for calling a rally in Badaun was that the UP Police and Delhi Police, in a joint action, had raided the residences of Najeeb’s relatives in Badaun on 28th January.
The harassment of Najeeb’s family will not discourage them from seeking justice or pursuing the case in the Delhi High Court where Fatima Nafees, as petitioner, has filed a habeas corpus petition seeking custody of her son, said Syed Azharuddin (National Secretary, SIO of India)