Arundhati Roy wants probe into Jamia Nagar shootoutOctober 19th, 2008 - 1:59 pm ICT by IANS
New Delhi, Oct 18 (IANS) Celebrated writer Arundhati Roy has joined the chorus of people demanding a probe into the Jamia Nagar incident in the capital last month, though she does not think the shootout in which two suspected terrorists were killed was a “fake enounter”.”I am just one of the thousands of people who are asking some very serious questions of the police. I am not saying that the encounter was fake. I am saying lets have an enquiry,” Arundhati Roy said in an interview with Karan Thapar for CNN-IBN channel.
In the Sep 19 shootout in the Muslim-dominated neighbourhood of Jamia Nagar, two suspected terrorists as well as a police officer were killed. But doubts have been raised about the incident and police claims that they were terrorists.
Roy accused the media of colluding with the police and said this is dangerous for civil society. “It is outrageous when the press accepts police accounts and publishes them as fact without verification. It is not only unfortunate but can be dangerous,” she said.
She also blamed the Indian middle class of eschewing its liberal democratic values and permitting India to become a “police state”. She equated events in India with Nazi Germany.
“We are increasingly accepting the fact that we are a police state and this sort of dovetailing of democracy into majoritarianism, into fascism, is something that is a real danger now. I feel that some day, like the Nazis in Germany, we will be called upon to answer for what we have done and why we kept quiet while this was happening,” said Roy.
Roy was a part of the Jan Sunwai Manch (platform to hear people’s grievances) organised by the Jamia Teachers Solidarity group on Oct 12 that demanded justice for those killed and arrested in the incident shootout and those arrested later in Uttar Pradesh’s Azamgarh district for alleged involvement in bombings.