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No Mastermind, But A Scapegoat: Family of Javed Mohammad

“They targeted my father portraying him as a “mastermind” to hide their own failures and made him a scapegoat,” said Umam, his son,  while describing his father as an important Muslim voice in Allahabad who would always be in the forefront for social activities.

Zafar Aafaq | Clarion India

NEW DELHI – Family of Javed Mohammad, leader of the Welfare Party of India and father of a prominent student leader Afreen Fatima in Prayagraj, has rejected the allegation that he was the “mastermind” of the Friday protests in the city against anti-Muslim remarks by BJP officials.
Speaking to The Clarion India over the phone, Umam Javed,30, elder son of Javed, said that the entire family, including his father, were at home on Friday. Hence, there was no question of any one of them taking part in the protests. “In fact, my father gave a call through Facebook urging people to return home peacefully after namaz,” he said.
“This city has always been peace-loving. Keeping in mind the circumstances, we should quietly offer our Friday prayers and pray to Allah for peace,” reads his Facebook post in Hindi.  “Everyone has the right to put forward their view within the boundaries of the law. We should come together and prepare a memorandum.”
Javed was detained on Friday evening at around 9 pm. According to Umam, a few cops came to their home and asked him to accompany them to the police station. “He went on his scooty thinking he would be returning soon, but they arrested him there.”
Later in the night, the police raided their home again and took away his wife Parveen Fatima and daughter Sumaya.
On Sunday, as Javed was behind bars, the government rolled in bulldozers and demolished their two-story home in broad daylight as the world watched in disbelief. The authorities maintain that the house was an “illegal structure” and that they had given notice to the family before taking the action.
However, the family said a notice was pasted outside their home just a few hours before the demolition. What is intriguing is that the notice carried the name of Mohammad Javed while the property is registered in the name of Parveen Fatima, his wife. The family also claimed that they have been filing house tax regularly which contradicts the claim of the administration that the house was a legal structure.
K K Roy,the family counsel who filed an urgent petition in the Allahabad High Court in the matter, said the property was gifted to Javed’s wife by her father and under Muslim Personal Law, the husband cannot have to a share in the property of his wife. The family said that the act of demolition is a form of punishment and an act of vendetta against Javed.
“They targeted my father portraying him as a “mastermind” to hide their own failures and made him a scapegoat,” Umam said while describing his father as an important Muslim voice in Allahabad who would always be at the forefront of social activities.
He has been the president of the Qabristan Committee of the Kala Danda Qabristan and helped in removing encroachments from local graveyards. He has also waged legal battles for the poor.
Umam said that Javed was also enjoyed good relations with local police and civil administration and would always assist them in negotiation through local civic and law and order issues. In his area, he was known for his voluntary humanitarian efforts during floods and the covid-19 pandemic.
“He helped the administration bring an end to the anti-CAA protest at Mansoor Park. At that time, many said he was going against the community. But he understood that COVID is going to hit and we should work together with the authorities,” a report in the Quint quoted his relative Mohammad Ziya telling the media.

Javed Mohammad along with his daughter, a prominent student leader. Afreen Fatima.
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