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HindustanTimes Fri,18 Apr 2014

Innocent won’t be harassed: Akhilesh

HT Correspondents, Hindustan Times  Lucknow, February 24, 2013
First Published: 14:19 IST(24/2/2013) | Last Updated: 14:22 IST(24/2/2013)

Chief minister Akhilesh Yadav on Saturday said no one would be allowed to harass any innocent person in the name of terrorism.

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At the same time, Yadav underlined the resolve of the entire nation to stand united against the scourge of terror.

He was speaking as the chief guest at a conclave of clerics and Muslim leaders in New Delhi.

The CM also used the occasion to stress the need of communal harmony and urged the gathering to work in concert with the Hindus so that prosperity came to everyone.

His statement comes in the backdrop of reports that the state government will re-examine cases involving 21 Muslim youths accused of being terrorists but held in detention without charges, capping a long campaign by Jamiat Ulamae-Hind leader Arshad Madni.

Yadav is said to have told Madni, after a series of meetings between January and February, that those Muslim youths against whom charges were already framed would be given faster trials, but bail could be facilitated for those who have been detained without charges for long periods. The state’s law department is said to have advised the government that such a move would not fall foul of the law.

The move could see a groundswell of support for the Samajwadi Party ahead of a general election next year from Muslims in the politically crucial state.

Most of the cases relate to the November 2007 bombings in Faizabad and Lucknow court premises. One relates to 26/11, in which two Indians, Fahimudd in Ansari and Sabahuddin Ahmed were held and were acquitted but still face some charges in UP.

“Innocent Muslim youths should be freed. Those guilty should be punished,” Madni told HT.

He also urged speedy passage of the much- delayed Prevention of Communal and Targeted Violence (Access to Justice and Reparations) Bill, 2011.

Politically, t he Arshad Madni faction of the Jamiat could throw its lot behind the Samajwadi Party. Condemning the blasts in Hyderabad, Madni said investigating agency should do a thorough probe, instead of arresting people in a hurry.

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