Acquittal of Kashmiri youth after 11 years of detention
‘Rafiq was in classroom in KU on day of blasts in Delhi’
Srinagar, February 18 : Muhammad Rafiq Shah, one of the three Kashmiri youth acquitted by a Delhi court after over 11 years of illegal detention in a case of Delhi bomb blasts as per the official records of Kashmir University was present in his classroom on the day of explosions.
Former Head of Department of Islamic Study Circle, Kashmir University, Professor Naseem Ahmed Shah in an interview in Srinagar said, “Yes, he was present in the class in the University and the then Vice Chancellor, Professor Abdul Wahid had handed over the official records and his attendance to Delhi Police. Despite this he was booked and his precious 11 years of life were ruined.” He said that Rafiq was a bright student, he was punctual and his results were always good.
In 2005, three bombs went off in crowded Delhi markets ahead of Diwali, killing 67 people. Delhi police arrested Muhammad Rafiq Shah after a team visited the Kashmir University. His arrest sparked shutdown at the varsity that continued for three weeks and officials at the University too vouched for his innocence.
“A team from Delhi Police visited Kashmir University and the then vice-chancellor Professor Abdul Wahid handed over details about Muhammad Rafiq to them. He (Rafiq) was arrested and flown to New Delhi despite the fact that he was present in the classroom on the day of blasts in New Delhi,” said a Professor at the Kashmir University.
He said this is the mockery of police and justice system in India. “You arrest an innocent and ruin his life. After a decade you say sorry to him. There is a need to initiate action against those police officers who implicate innocent people in false cases,” he said, adding that hollow justice system had ruined the careers of scores of people from Kashmir.
Muhammad Rafiq Shah (now 34), a resident of Shuhama area of Hazratbal, according to his family was implicated for being religious.
“My son was in his classroom in the Kashmir University when the blasts took place in Delhi. He is innocent. He lost more than a decade of his life to false allegations. Who is going to give that back to us,” said Rafiq’s mother, Mehbooba Yasin.
“We belong to a poor family and our son was our only hope for a better life. He was a bright student and wanted to do something for the youth of Kashmir,” she said.