Mumbai Police files case against BJP spokesperson Nupur Sharma for her remarks on Prophet Muhammad on behest of Islamist group Raza Academy | #oscars | #academywards

Mumbai Police has filed case u/s 295A, 153A and 505B of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) against BJP spokesperson Nupur Sharma on behest of Raza Academy, an Islamist outfit with a history of violence. Raza Academy was responsible for the 2012 Azad Maidan riots. Founded in 1978, it has its office located on Mohammed Ali Road in Mumbai. The Islamist outfit was established to publish and propagate the work of Sunni leader Ahmed Raza Khan, who lived in the 20th century.

In 2012, it came to light that the organisation did not have any registration. The most surprising aspect about Raza Academy is that its founder and President Saeed Noori did not even receive a formal Islamic education. He was into the sewing thread business when he decided to become a leader of Sunni Islam.

Raza Academy has led several protests, including the recent on in Nanded which often led to violence, injuries and deaths. Despite its activities, Raza Academy has not been banned or subjected to police scrutiny.

Vandalism of Amar Jawan Jyothi memorial at Azad Madian

On 11 August 2012, Raza academy had staged a morcha at Azad Maidan ground to protest against the alleged atrocities on Muslims in Assam and Myanmar. However, the protest turned violent after the notorious group attacked the policemen. This led to police firing, resulting in 2 deaths and 63 injuries. Raza Academy had earlier assured the Mumbai Police that only 1500 people would turn up for the protest. 

However, more than 15000 people assembled at the Azad Maidan, which later increased to 40000. The most shocking incident of the Azad Maidan Riots was the desecration of the Amar Jawan Jyoti memorial by the Muslim mobs.

Later, it came to light that the police waited for one week until Eid to arrest the 35-40 Muslim youths, who were involved in rioting. The riots had caused approximately Rs 2.72 crores worth of damages to various public properties.

Raza Academy and its crusade against ‘blasphemy’

In July 2020, the Islamist outfit forced the Maha Vikas Aghadi government to write to the Centre, seeking a ban on the online streaming of the Iranian movie ‘Muhammad: The Messenger of God.‘ The film was originally released in Iran in 2015 and was selected as the Iranian entry for the Best Foreign Language Film category at the 88th Academy Awards. Raza Academy had claimed that Prophet Muhammad could not be picturised and that the makers of the film had committed blasphemy. “A Muslim will die in honour than to see or hear even the slightest insult on his Holy Prophet,” it had threatened.

In October 2020, the Islamist outfit had demanded that Muslim countries issue a fatwa against French President Emmanuel Macron after cartoons on Prophet Mohammed by Charlie Hebdo were projected onto government buildings. It demanded that all French embassies and consulates in Muslim countries be shut down and all ambassadors to France be recalled. It also urged people on social media to exercise their freedom of expression against the ‘Satanic minded president’ using the hashtag ‘Macron the Devil’.

Raza Academy had hailed the actions of Muslim protestors in Mumbai, who had put up images of the French President on the streets of the city, walked and drove on those posters as a mark of protest against Macron. The protests had come after Macron had condemned the Islamic terror attack on a French teacher who was beheaded by his student for showing Charlie Hebdo caricatures.

In February 2021, an organisation named Tahaffuz Namoos-e-Risalat Board (Protection of the Honour of Prophet), backed by Raza Academy had filed a complaint against BBC Hindi for displaying a portrait of Prophet Mohammed in one of their shows. BBC, which champions the cause of free speech, gave in to the threats and issued an apology immediately.

Later in September, Raza Academy ran a campaign on social media platforms, urging King Salman of Saudi Arabia to impose a ban on cinema halls in Madina Shareef. The Islamist outfit also held a protest march outside Minara Masjid in Mumbai. The protestors were heard raising slogans of “Saudi Hukumat Murdabad” and holding placards that read, “Saudi Government Must Stop Desecration of The Holy City of Madina Munawwarah.” The development came at the backdrop of the Kingdom’s decision to open 10 cinema halls in the country.

Islamists lead attack on Nupur Sharma, BJP spokesperson

Following a debate on Times Now on Thursday evening, AltNews cofounder Mohammed Zubair dog-whistled an online mob against Sharma accusing her of insulting Prophet Muhammad. He was supported by other Islamists, many of who issued death and rape threats to her and her family.

During a debate on Times Now on the disputed Gyanvapi structure, Nupur Sharma argued that since people are mocking the Hindu faith repeatedly, then they can also mock other religions referring to Islamic beliefs. Taking that video out of context, Zubair shared it with his 464,000 Twitter followers declaring Nupur a rabid communal hatemonger and someone who can incite riots.

The dog-whistling obviously worked perfectly as troll accounts descended upon Nupur Sharma’s timeline giving her all kinds of threats including threats to behead her. With several similar incidents like Kamlesh Tiwari and Kishan Bharwad abound, the police should look at these threats seriously.

Twitter Spaces were organised where Islamists could be heard making open calls to murder her over the alleged ‘blasphemy’.

No action has been taken against Mohammed Zubair yet.


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