In an embarrassment for the Yogi Adityanath government, which is taking strict action against those who indulged in violence during the anti-Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) protests, the police has served a notice to a man who died six years ago.
The police in Ferozabad district have sent out notices to about 200 people asking them to explain why action should not be taken against them for the violence during the anti-Citizenship Amendment Act protests.
One such notice has been served to Banne Khan, who died six years ago at the age of 94.
Khan's son Mohammad Sarfaraz confirmed the incident and said that the police should have conducted a 'proper inquiry'
"I also have my father's death certificate. I am going to tell the police to go to my father's grave and ask him to apply for bail. What else do I do?" he asked.
Two other men in their nineties -- 93-year-old Fasahat Meer Khan, who has been bedridden for months and 90-year-old Sufi Ansar Hussain, who is suffering from pneumonia and has just returned from a Delhi hospital after his treatment -- have also received similar notices.
Khan is the founder of a college in Ferozabad while Hussain has been a caretaker at a local mosque for about six decades.
Both men are members of their local peace committees that regularly coordinate with the police for maintaining peace in any area.
In notices issued to both men, they have been asked to appear before a government magistrate and apply for bail after submitting a bond of Rs 10 lakh.
Ansar Hussain said: "I was at Sir Gangaram Hospital in Delhi on December 25 and have returned only yesterday. I do not know why they did this. I have spent all my life to ensure peace in the city. There was an Urs on December 20 and I had even invited the authorities."
Ferozabad City Magistrate Kunwar Pankaj Singh said that there was an error and will be rectified.
"There was a lot of pressure on us to maintain peace and these were interim measures taken based on the reports from various police stations," he told reporters and added that no action will be taken against any elderly persons.
The protests against the new citizenship law were held in several parts of Uttar Pradesh.
In Ferozabad, where four people died in clashes on December 20, about 35 cases were registered and 29 people named in them, out of which 14 people were arrested and jailed by the local police. After the violence subsided, the local police sent out notices to at least 200 people asking them to prove they would not be a threat to peace in the area.
Chief Minister Adityanath had warned of a 'crackdown' on the protesters and the government ordered that those found responsible for damaging public property during the protests would have to pay for it.
For in-depth, objective and more importantly balanced journalism, Click here to subscribe to Outlook Magazine