Did not Imagine a Play would Attract Such Harsh Actions: Shaheen School Chairman on Sedition

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Dr. Abdul Qadeer, President of Shaheen Education Foundation.

Abdul Bari Masoud | Caravan Daily

BIDAR (Karnataka) – Terming the filing of the FIR against some faculty members of the institution as unfortunate, the Shaheen Group of Institutions chairman Dr Abdul Qadeer stated on Wednesday that applications have already been filed for anticipatory bails. Shaheen was not only a leading minority educational institution in India but is also grooming youths who would uphold values and morals in their lives, he said.

In a telephonic conversation with Caravan Daily, Dr Qadeer said an innocuous play against the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) was staged by students of the institute. Now, cases are being filed against those involved in this. In a democratic society, every citizen has the right to lend his/her voice on issues, by any form of expression, he said and added that the government responded in a harsh manner. The teaching staff was booked under harsh sections of the sedition law; and this would hurt the health of democracy.

The play was performed on Sunday, and a case filed the following day after its video started doing the rounds on social media. A local BJP worker approached the police with a complaint, alleging anti-national activity. The police have been “mentally harassing the students and the staff” for the last three days, and even interrogating students of Classes IV and V. “We did not imagine that the mere staging of a drama would attract such harsh actions,” Dr Qadeer said, adding, “We have applied for anticipatory bail for the teachers who have been named in the FIR.”

He said it was heartening to note that the Shaheen Group got tremendous all-round support on this issue, and “we would succeed in court,” he said.

SDPI BACKS SHAHEEN

Meanwhile, the Social Democratic Party of India extended it support to the Shaheen Group. Party vice president and noted lawyer Sharfuddin Ahmad said the intimidation of educational institutions by citing sedition provisions and filing cases was not acceptable and must be condemned by one and all. He told Caravan Daily that the Modi-Shah government was scared of the growing force of the commoners fighting for and strengthening the cause of democracy. “Therefore even a mere play of school kids makes them jittery, and they invoke colonial, undemocratic and redundant British era provisions like law of sedition which is not acceptable in a democratic system,” he said.

He said the BJP government has unleashed a reign of terror to frighten the vast majority of Indians opposing the unconstitutional acts like the CAA. Providing a legal perspective, he stated that it was a well-settled principle that mere pronouncement of views does not amount to treason, as long as no violent acts are resorted to.

SHAHEEN GROUP

Notably, the Shaheen Group is not confined to only the historic city of Bidar. It has spread its wings through nine states. The group runs 43 Institutions and related units. It has also been running a unique course for Huffaz named as ‘Hifz Ul Quran Plus’ in which Huffaz are prepared to appear and excel in competitive exams (NEET-JEE(IIT)).

The chairman Dr Qadeer said Shaheen’s mission is to engage, educate and empower wards, equipping them with strengths to enter the world of opportunities through free education across various domains in state- owned academic centers of excellence. The group also runs coaching centers for medical and engineering entrance examinations. So far 1,200 students from the Shaheen Group of institutions got seats in government medical colleges, he said.

On the ‘Hifz Ul Quran Plus’ course, he said it was for huffaz between 12 and 17 years. A four-year integrated course is conducted for Huffaz-E-Karam for getting students modern education. By pursuing this course and by appearing in competitive exams (NEET-IIT JEE), Huffaz will be able to get admission into MBBS, BE, & MBA, he added.

1 COMMENT

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