Treat murder of youth in Belagavi as religious honour killing: Fact-finding team

Members of the fact-finding team met the family of Arbaz Aftab Mulla in Belagavi on October 8, 2021.  

A fact-finding team comprising members of civil society groups has urged the Belagavi police to treat the murder of 25-year-old Arbaz Aftab Mulla on September 28 as ‘communal honour killing’ and not pass it off as a case of contract killing.

They want the Karnataka Government to take steps to ensure compliance with the Supreme Court judgment in the Shakthi Vahini vs Union of India case, which mandates protection to all inter-faith and inter-caste couples.

‘A Murder in Belagavi, A Report, An Appeal for Justice Solidarity Harmony’ was released by the fact-finding team that visited Belagavi on October 7. The team appealed to people of Karnataka to extend solidarity to the family of Mulla who was allegedly murdered by activists of Sri Rama Sena Hindustan (SRS-H) at the behest of the family of the girl with whom Mulla was in love. The report says that the involvement of the girl's family must be seen in tandem with that of the SRS-H, and the police and district administration must ensure safety of Mulla's family.

“In the last few weeks, we have seen increasing instances of religious goondaism (moral policing), which seek to divide the youth. They deny women any choice, and attack the dignity of Muslims and Christians. Cases have been reported across Karnataka from Mandya to Mangaluru,” it said.

It said that Mulla was beheaded while Muslim boys in Ilkal were beaten up for wearing a skull cap. In the latter case, victims of the violence have been arrested. Churches and pastors are being attacked, and police are barging into Christian homes, violating their most basic rights, the report alleged, adding that the State is also witnessing an increase in assault on Dalits.

“We appeal to all fellow citizens, who believe in India's Constitution, to organise themselves to hold the government and law enforcement agencies accountable, to ensure justice for victims of such violence, and to stand in solidarity with all those under attack,” the report stated.

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Printable version | Dec 3, 2021 1:32:46 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/treat-murder-of-youth-in-belagavi-as-religious-honour-killing-fact-finding-team/article37207695.ece

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