MP: Activist Zaid Pathan, Who Spoke Against Khargone Demolition Drive, Arrested Under NSA

As per news reports, Indore collector Manish Singh said that Pathan was arrested for spreading hate among the communities, disturbing communal harmony, and posting objectionable posts on social media.

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New Delhi: A Muslim activist Zaid Pathan, a strong critic of Madhya Pradesh’s ‘bulldozer justice’, was arrested in Khargone district on Monday, August 15 under the National Security Act (NSA).

Indore collector Manish Singh told APNlive.com that he was arrested for spreading hate among the communities, disturbing communal harmony, inciting religious sentiments, and posting objectionable posts on social media platforms.

The charges against Pathan have been filed at Banganga police station in Indore and Khargone police station.

However, The Wire couldn’t independently verify the posts for which charges have been filed against the activist.

Pathan, who is also known to be a community leader, had spoken against the bulldozer drives carried out by the local authorities in Madhya Pradesh.

After violence was reported during Ram Navami processions in Khargone, the local administration started razing shops and buildings, most of them allegedly owned by financially disadvantaged Muslim families. As many as 80 people were arrested.

In fact, according to a fact-finding team, comprising representatives of eight political parties, the Bharatiya Janata Party government and district administration was directly responsible for the communal violence in the region during Ram Navami, as The Wire had reported. The fact-finding team also said that the action had largely been one-sided, i.e. against the Muslims.

Pathan had told news outlets that the administration targeted Muslims, especially those who stood against the atrocities against them. He had also said that the culprits of the Ram Navami violence had registered fake FIRs.

Also read: A List of Activists, Scholars and Scribes Whose Personal Liberty Remains at Judiciary’s Mercy

In August last year, the activist protested against an incident when a Muslim bangle seller was beaten and allegedly robbed by a mob in broad daylight in Indore. The state home minister, Narottam Mishra, had reacted to the incident, claiming that the victim was attacked after people “realised that he was using a fake name to run his business.”

Pathan was arrested along with two others for demanding stringent action against the culprits, NewsClick had reported.

Meanwhile, several activists have shared their views on Pathan’s arrest on Twitter, asking for his immediate release. One of the activists tweeted that Pathan was being targeted ever since he took a stand against the illegal demolition of properties of Muslims by the Khargone administration.

Another activist wrote that people committing serious crimes get bail immediately but those speaking the truth are facing serious charges.