INTERNATIONAL QUDS DAY: INDIAN MUSLIMS HOLD MASSIVE DEMONSTRATION IN SUPPORT OF PALESTINE

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Muslims in large number gathered near Parliament House inNew Delhi in solidarity with Palestinians on the International Quds Day on Friday. — Caravan photos

Protestors also submitted a memorandum to Prime Minister Narendra Modi highlighting the concern over the pro-Israel policy of his government.

GHAZANFAR ABBAS | Caravan Daily

NEW DELHI — Thousands of Muslims hit the Indian streets in solidarity with Palestinians on the International Quds Day on Friday. A massive protest demonstration was held near the Parliament House here in New Delhi. They strongly condemned the policies of Israel and the US vis-à-vis Palestine.

Addressing the gathering, Navaid Hamid, National President of All India Muslim Majlis-e-Mushawarat, an umbrella body of Indian Muslim organizations, said, “These massive protests worldwide show that people are against the stubborn attitude of Israel and the US. We will continue raising our voices for Palestine.”

Hamid scathingly condemned the recent killing of scores of Palestinians, including Razan al-Najjar, a Palestinian nurse, in the firing of Israeli forces in Gaza.

“Israel is so coward that by shooting a 21-year-old Palestinian nurse, it wants to show its courage.”

Protestors burnt the effigies of Benjamin Netanyahu and Donald Trump in New Delhi.

Raising slogans against Israel and the US, demonstrators were holding placards with various messages like ‘Palestine will be free’, ‘Delete Israel’, ‘Join hands in this global movement to expose the real face of Zionism’, ‘Why killed Razan Al Najjar’, ‘Stop the persecution of the people of Palestine’, ‘I can see Jerusalem is the capital of Palestine’, ‘Netanyahu Murdabad’, ‘Trump Murdabad’, ‘Israeli PM Netanyahu nahi Shaitanyahu hai’.

On the occasion, several clerics and leaders from Muslim organizations along with protestors took out a march and also addressed the gathering.

“We have assembled here to oppose the system of oppression that has caused severe trouble to the world which is seeking peace. Palestinians have been compelled to live on their own land as refugees. And the world is silent. I wonder, whose children are killed from day to night are blamed for terrorism,” Maulana Jinan Asghar said.

“It is crystal clear that the same forces are responsible for bloodshed from Palestine to Iraq to Syria to Yemen to Bahrain,” Asghar averred.

Yusuf Siddiqui from Muslim Fraternity said, “It is unfortunate that Saudi Arabia is working alongside the US and Israel against Iran which has always stood for Palestine since beginning. Palestine will be free. Along with Palestine, we condemn oppression in Yemen, Syria and other countries too.”

Protestors holding playcards.

Siddiqui also expressed concern over increase in defence dealing with Israel by the Narendra Modi-led NDA government in the last four years.

Protestors also submitted a memorandum to Prime Minister Narendra Modi highlighting the concern over the pro-Israel policy of his government.

“Our nation always stood by the side of the weak and oppressed. Now, we see a drastic shift in our foreign policy towards Israel and other imperialistic powers. The country which has always sided with the cause of Palestinians is increasingly aligning itself with Israel despite the fact that the hearts of peace-loving Indians (without the barriers of religion) are still with the oppressed people of Palestine. We demand the restoration of the basic principle of Indian foreign policy,” the memorandum stated.

Protestors listening speeches on the occasion

Children in large numbers also participated in the protest rally. Many of them carrying a placard with “I am killer of thousands of children” written on it with the picture of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Several other Muslim leaders including Inamur Rehman, representative from Jamaat-e-Islami Hind (JIH); Maulana Syed Mosa Taqvi, Imam of Shia Jama Masjid, Delhi,; Shaikh Askari, Secretary of  Majlis-e Ulema-e Hind, Delhi along with others also spoke on the occasion.

Inamur Rehman said, “Our mission to get Palestine free will be successful through these massive protest gatherings only.”

Speaking to Caravan Daily, Maulana Syed Mohsin Taqvi said, “We are here to demand freedom of Palestine and Baitul Muqaddas (Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem). The issue of Palestine is not just Islamic; it is an issue of human rights because Palestinians have been deprived of their rights.”

Besides Delhi, such protest demonstrations were held in at least 50 Indian cities including Lucknow, Bangalore, Mumbai, Chennai, Hyderabad, Patna, Srinagar and Allahabad on Friday.

Quds is the Arabic name for Jerusalem, the holy city in Israel. After Islamic revolution in Iran in 1979, Iran’s Supreme Leader Imam Khomeini had given a global call to observe the last Friday of Ramadhan as Al-Quds Day in the solidarity of Palestinian people for the freedom of Palestine and Al-Aqsa Mosque. Since then, every year millions of people worldwide hold demonstrations.

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