5,000 Killed, 50,000 Homeless in India 'Pogrom'

Released March 16, 2002

The Wisdom Fund, P. O. Box 2723, Arlington, VA 22202

Website: http://www.twf.org -- Press Contact: Enver Masud

5,000 Killed, 50,000 Homeless in India 'Pogrom'

Former Indian Navy Chief Demands Ban on Extremists, Dismissal of Chief



An independent reporters group claims 5,000 Muslims killed, 50,000 made

homeless, hundreds of mosques, and dozens of hotels, shops, and 


destroyed during riots in the Indian province of Gujrat.

Former Chief of the Indian Navy, L. Ramdas, in an open letter to the

Indian Prime Minister, Atal Behari Vajpayee, has condemned the 


violence in India describing it as genocide and a "pogrom." Mr. Ramdas

demanded that the Chief Minister of Gujrat be dismissed for his

involvement in the anti-Muslim riots, and a ban on "extremist rightwing

organizations like the VHP, Bajrang Dal, and the RSS."

"Clearly this appears to be the culmination of a planned series of 


on our minority communities by the extremists within the Sangh 


wrote Mr. Ramdas. "The entire list is too long to cite here, but to 


only a few, the past decade has witnessed the destruction of the Babri

Masjid in 1992, which led to the Mumbai bomb blasts and the subsequent

massacre of innocent Muslims; the burning alive of Father Staines and 


sons in Orissa; and the attacks on Christians and their places of 


in Gujrat and elsewhere."

Hindu extremeists, armed with swords and rifles, are reported to have

"exploded houses and mosques" with LPG and oxygen cylinders, and are

reported to have been supplied with trucks loaded with gasoline and gas

cylinders. They are also reported to have been paid Rs 500 ($12.50) per

day, and provided food, water, wine, and medical aid. If arrested, 


legal expenses were to be covered by the Vishwa Hindu Parishad, and if

they were killed, it is reported, their families would be given Rs 



Based on "actual field surveys and counts in the state of Gujrat," the

independent reporters group estimates the toll of death and destruction 



- More than 5000 dead, 40 to 50 thousand hhomeless in 25 relief camps,

including 72 people burned inside their homes in Gulmarg society, 29

people killed in Mehsana village, 46 people killed and burned in a 


on Lunawada highway, 18 people burned in the "Best Bakery" in Baroda, 


Muslim dead thrown in a well near Naroda Patiya, young girls and women

molested and raped before burning.

- Mosques destroyed: 12 in Baroda, 10 in AAhmedabad, all in the villages

affected by riots, and several converted into Hindu temples.

- Completely burned areas of Ahmedabad: Annsar Nagar, Chamanpura, Nutan

Mill, Gulmarg Society, Maryambibi's Chawl, Barasancha's Chawl, Darji's

Chawl, Anupam Cinema's area, Lent Wada, Pannalal's Chawl, Niranjan's

Chawl, Jhalampura's Chawl, three societies of Vatwa, three societies of

Narol, Guptangar (Juhapura), Naroda Patiya, Mai Fatehshah (Shahpur),


- All the property of small Muslim villagees, approximately 200 hotels, 


cloth markets (Nawa Bazar and Mangal Bazar with 163 shops) were 


"The entire nation is shocked at the callousness and inefficiency

displayed by the law and order machinery of the Government of Gujarat,"

said Mr. Ramdas, "which not only failed to perform its duty to its

citizens, but also stood by and in several cases actually incited what 


best be described as a 'pogrom'. Compare this to the scene indelibly

imprinted on my mind, when I saw Mr. Jawaharlal Nehru, Prime Minister 


India, hop out of an official car and chase away looters and rioters, 


were killing Muslims and looting their properties in Connaught Place in

August 1947."

Copyright  2002 The Wisdom Fund - Provided that it is not edited, and

author name, organization, and web address (www.twf.org) are included,

this article may be printed in newspapers and magazines, and displayed 


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