‘My brother’s life is an open book’

The Hindu

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Families of some of those arrested pin their hopes on the judiciary

The relatives of three of the 11 persons arrested on terror charges on Wednesday have said that they now have their hopes pinned on the judiciary. They came together to address a press conference here on Friday.

Sheikh Rafiq Ahmed, Ata-ur-Rahman and Sakina addressing a press conference in Bangalore on Friday. Photo: V. Sreenivaasa Murthy

Journalist Muthi-ur-Rahman Siddiqui’s brother Ata-ur-Rahman said: “My brother’s life is an open book. He loved his country. He loved his family and was committed to becoming a good journalist.” Calling for harsh punishment if he is found guilty, Ata-ur-Rahman said, “But if the police find that they have caught the wrong person, they should release him immediately and not wait for the court to acquit him.”

Father of Jaffar Iqbal, Sheikh Rafiq Ahmed, who is an Assistant Conservator of Forests, said, “We come from a very respectable family. Chief Minister Jagadish Shettar’s house [in Hubli] is a few metres from ours… we are neighbours.”

He also said: “My greatest achievement in life is educating all my children. Two of my children are doctors and the third is an engineer. I made many sacrifices to educate them.”

Sakina, mother of Mohammed Yusuf, who was employed in the sales team in a leading information technology company, said, “I have not eaten anything since the arrest. Since my husband’s death, I have been dependant on the Rs. 5,000 that my son would send home without fail every month.”

Stating that she is non-literate, she produced certificates that showed that her son was a marathon runner and had won several competitions. He was also an NCC cadet in his Pre-University days and a good student. But he had to discontinue studies due to financial problems after his father died. Lamenting that she has no other source of income, Ms. Sakina said, “Let the police also arrest me along with my son. At least I will get to eat in Jail.”

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