UP ATS Arrests Muslim Doctor from Maharashtra in Alleged Conversion Case

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Representational image.

Jamiat Ulama to fight the case related to Umar Gautam’s arrest

Waquar Hasan | Clarion India

NEW DELHI – Anti-Terrorist Squad (ATS) of Uttar Pradesh arrested a 35-year-old doctor Faraz Shah from Maharashtra’s Yavatmal district on Sunday night in connection with an alleged ‘conversion syndicate’ related to the Umar Gautam case.

The ATS claimed that Shah, who is an MBBS doctor and runs a clinic, was part of the group which is involved in “illegal conversion”.

“The accused Faraz Shah was carrying out the works of illegal conversion in cohoot with Umar Gautam and his group at broad level. He is the main aide of Adam (Rameshwar Kaware), Kausar and Arsalan – the three accused who were arrested in a conversion case. He indulged in the conspiracy of converting people in great numbers,” claimed the ATS in a press release on Monday about Shah’s arrest.

The ATS claimed that through the evaluation of the data from electronic devices (Audio, video, photo, etc.), they have found that “accused Prasad, Kausar, Arsalan and Faraz are radically motivated”. Some video clips seized from the mobile device of the arrested accused contain anti-national and anti-religion and communal-harmony breaching related conversations.

In June, the ATS had arrested two Islamic preachers Umar Gautam and his aide Mufti Jahangir for allegedly converting 1,000 people. It claimed that Gautam had forcibly converted people including differently abled and received foreign funding for this purpose. However, Muslim leaders and Gautam’s family members rejected all the allegations.

Like previous arrests, the latest arrest, too, is being seen with scepticism. Activists are saying the arrest of Faraz Shah is a ‘made-up’ case. The Arshad Madani group of Jamiat Ulama-i-Hind has decided to defend him in Court.

Advocate Shahid Nadeem, who is supervising the case on behalf of the Jamiat, said that the family members of Shah have not been given the details of the case. They don’t know what charges have been invoked against him. Nadeem also informed that Shah has not been produced in the court till this evening. They will be able to provide the details of the case after he is produced before the court.

Gulzar Azmi, head of Jamiat’s Legal Department, told Clarion India that Shah’s mother has requested them to fight their case.

“We are absolutely sure that Dr. Faraz is innocent. Our local unit made recommendations to take up this case and our local leaders know that he is not involved in any illegal activities. We have taken it up after investigating the case. We have proudly helped hundreds of Muslims to be acquitted from the false case,” said Azmi.

He said that all these arrests in the name of illegal conversion are being made for polarization during the election time in Uttar Pradesh. As the BJP government has failed on all fronts, they are trying to raise such issues.

He rejected the allegation of forcible conversion saying that no Muslim would do that as Islam does not allow forcible conversion.

Aslam Ghazi, Convener of Association for Protection of Civil Rights (APCR), Maharashtra, also believes that Shah and other accused in the conversion case are being wrongly implicated.

“Earlier, Muslim youths were being arrested in terror case. Before that, they were arrested in riot cases. Muslims were arrested in the case of riots which happened in Meerut, Maliana, Delhi and Gujarat, etc. Every now and then, they come up with a conspiracy to harass, kill and destroy their lives. The new conspiracy is conversion and love jihad,” said Ghazi.

He also said that all these conversions are under the law of the land. The constitution grants everyone the right to propagate their religion and conversion.

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