A video clip of former JNU student Umar Khalid's speech that he gave in Maharashtra's Amravati a week before riots in Delhi has been doing the rounds on social media.
In the clip, he is heard asking people to come out on streets in large numbers when US President Donald Trump reaches India on February 24.
BJP IT Cell chief Amit Malviya shared the clip on Twitter. It has garnered over 100,000 views.
The video was also shared by Akali Dal leader Manjinder Sirsa. It has been viewed over 4000 times.
"I promise that when Donald Trump will visit India on February 24, we will show how Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his government is trying to divide the country and tarnish the principles of Mahatma Gandhi... We will come out on streets in huge numbers to tell (the US President) that people of India are fighting to bring everyone together," Khalid can be heard saying while addressing a rally in Maharashtra's Amravati on February 17.
Sirsa, in an interview with Republic TV, said, "It was all organised by these kinds of people. Aam Aadmi Party is totally involved in this. Their Corporator is involved in the riots and they planned the whole thing. The plan was that when Donald Trump arrives they will try to scare Donald Trump and instil fear in the minds of the people across the globe which eventually will benefit the Opposition and Aam Aadmi Party."
Filed under sections 147 (rioting), 148 (rioting, armed with deadly weapon), 149 (unlawful assembly) and 120B (criminal conspiracy)of the Indian Penal Code (IPC), the FIR filed based on a complaint of one Sub-Inspector Arvind Kumar of the Crime Branch does not name Meeran. It has been registered against two persons — Umar Khalid, former JNU student and activist, and Danish, a resident of Bhajanpura.
The case registered by the Crime Branch was transferred for investigation by the Special Cell, which has made it more stringent by adding severe sections of the IPC such as 120B read with 124A (sedition), 302 (murder), 307 (attempt to murder), 353 (assault to deter public servant from discharge of his duty), 186 (obstructing public servant in discharge of public functions), 212 (harbouring offender), 395 (dacoity), 427 (mischief causing damage to the amount of Rs 50), 435 (mischief by fire or explosive substance with intent to cause damage to amount of Rs 100), 436 (mischief by fire or explosive substance with intent to destroy house, etc.), 452 (house-trespass after preparation for hurt, assault or wrongful restraint), 454 (lurking house-trespass), 109 (abetment), 114 (abettor present when offence is committed), 147, 148, 149, 124A, 153A (promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion, race, place of birth, residence, language) and 34 (common intention) in addition to 3 and 4 of the Prevention of Damage to Public Property (PDPP) Act and 25 and 27 of the Arms Act.
In the original FIR registered by the Crime Branch, the complainant — Sub-Inspector Arvind Kumar — states, "One of my informers has informed me that the riots, which took place in Delhi on February 23, 24 and 25, was a pre-planned conspiracy, which was hatched by JNU student Umar Khalid and his accomplices — who are associated with two different organisations.
Umar Khalid — as part of the conspiracy — made inflammatory speeches at two different places appealed people to hit roads and block it in the wake of US President Donald Trump's proposed visit to India so that propaganda can be spread internationally that minorities in India are persecuted.
As planned, Umar Khalid and his accomplices brought women and children on roads at several places in Delhi to cause riots. As part of the conspiracy, firearms, petrol bomb, acid bottles, stones, catapults and other lethal weapons were collected at several parts of Delhi such as Maujpur, Kardampuri, Jaffrabad, Chand Bagh, Gokalpuri, Shiv Vihar and surrounding areas. One Danish, S/O Khalid, a resident of Bhajanpura, was tasked with mobilising outsiders from two different places to take part in the riots. As part of the conspiracy, the road under Jaffrabad Metro Station was got blocked by women and children so that tension can be aggravated by causing inconvenience to people and the same can lead to riots. It was made sure that the children of the minority community who study in the schools in these areas reach home early as planned. If this conspiracy is probed, it will be possible to identify those who engineered and executed the riots."
According to an Indian Express report, Umar Khalid and a local resident of Northeast Delhi's Bhajanpura, Danish, have been booked under the Act.
Reportedly, the police invoked the UAPA against the two because of "alleged links with the Popular Front of India (PFI)".
"More arrests are likely in the coming days," an officer was quoted as saying. Sections 13, 15, 16, 17 and 18 of the UAPA (dealing with terrorist acts or funding) have been invoked against them.
Umar Khalid made inciting comments in his speech
The claim is misleading.
The video clip is 36 seconds long whereas his entire speech is much longer.
What Exactly Did Khalid Say?
Nowhere in his speech does he seem to be instigating violence anywhere.
The Wire has transcripted his full speech.
"When Donald Trump comes to India on 24 February, then we will say that the Prime Minister and the government of India are trying to divide the country. They are destroying the values of Mahatma Gandhi, and the people of India are fighting against them. If those in power want to divide India, the people of India are ready to unite the country," Khalid can be heard saying.
Reportedly, the United Against Hate (UAH), a citizens' campaign, in a press said, "Very craftily they (BJP MPs) have omitted other parts of his speech where Umar Khalid had said that the only two weapons we will use in this struggle are those given by Mahatma Gandhi – Ahimsa and Satyagraha – and that we will fight against hate with love."
What Is United Against Hate?
The campaign began after the lynching of 15-year-old Mohammad Junaid at Ballabhgarh in Haryana on June 22, 2017. He was lynched to death in a moving train after he was returning home following Eid shopping.
Initially started by activists Nadeem Khan, Khalid Saifi, Umar Khalid and Banojyotsna Lahiri, the campaign was joined by several others from across the country. Kins of the victims of caste violence and hate crimes also joined it.
Prominent among them are Radhika Vemula, the mother of Rohit Vemula who had committed suicide following harassment at Hyderabad Central University, and Fatima Nafees, the mother of missing Jawaharlal Nehru University student Najeeb Ahmad.
The UAH has organised several protests against lynchings and other excesses against the marginalised communities. It also documents hate crimes across the country and provides help to victims' families. It is engaged in several other social works as well.
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