Statements by BJP’s Uma Bharati and Vijay Kumar Malhotra on Gujarat
BJP spokespersons Uma Bharati, inside Parliament, and Vijay Kumar Malhotra have claimed that documented cases of barbarism against women in particular – rape, slashing open of the womb and burning the foetus – are being falsely propagated by Sahmat/Communalism Combat.
The case of a woman’s womb being slashed was first reported in an article in the Times of India by a serving IAS officer on deputation in Gujarat, Harsh Mander. The case of Qausar Bano is corroborated by three independent reports:
‘Naroda Patiya: The Times of India of March 13 says that, according to the police, 107 were burned to death in Naroda Patiya and the adjacent area. . . . Amina, an educated woman who worked in a printing press and lived near the Noorani Masjid in this area, said that the rioters separated the women and children from the men, but after this happened the women were also attacked brutally. A pregnant woman, Quasar, was slashed through her stomach with a sword and killed. . . . Sabira Bibi and Chand Bibi confirmed the story about Quasar. In fact, the latter said she was an eyewitness. (State Sponsored Carnage in Gujarat, Report of the CPI(M)-AIDWA delegation, p. 23)
‘That terrible day (February 28, 2002), I was hiding with some others on the roof of
my house. From there I saw my dearest friend Qausar Bano (resident of Pirojnagar, opposite Noorani Masjid, Kumbhajini Chawl, Naroda Patiya) raped, her unborn baby slashed out from her womb before being tossed into the fire to be roasted alive. Thereafter she too was brutally cut up and torched. She was 9 months pregnant.’ (Witness Amina Aapa, Hussain Nagar, Naroda Patiya, in Genocide Gujarat 2002, Communalism Combat, March-April 2002, p. 21)
‘Members of the fact-finding committee have seen photographic evidence of the burnt bodies of a mother and a foetus lying on the mother’s belly, as if torn from the uterus and left on the gash. We do not know if that was Qauser Bano.’ (Fact-finding Women’s Panel in its report, The Survivors Speak, April 2002, p. 10)
40 survivors who came to Delhi recently narrated their terrible experiences to the President of India and his statement to the nation reflects his anguish at the brutality they have been subjected to.
We strongly condemn the BJP’s attempt to cover for their stormtroopers the VHP and the Bajrang Dal, and dupe the nation about their true face.