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Friday, March 26, 2010 04:03:48 AM, Staff Reporter

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Malegaon: More than half a dozen NGOs in and around Mumbai have joined hands to press the Congress-led UPA Government so as to bring about important changes in the Communal Violence Bill that it is planning to pass during the ongoing parliament session.


Towards seeking this goal, the NGOs and Civil Rights Groups are planning to organise a public meeting in Mumbai today on Friday in the evening.


"We endorse the need for a law on the issue. However, we are convinced that this Communal Violence Bill 2009, if
passed, will not only be weak but also dangerous", state the organisers adding, "It will not only fail to secure justice for communal crimes, make the victims and minorities  more vulnerable during communal conflagrations but will actually strengthen the shield of protection enjoyed by those who plan and  sponsor these crimes, including public officials."


"Citizens groups for the last 5 years have highlighted the various flaws in the bill and had suggested amendments. But the basic flaws still exists in the version 2009 of the CVP Bill", state the organisers.

"Hence", they say, "We are left with no choice but to take this issue to the masses who have voted a Secular government in the Centre with a hope to witness a country free of communal hatred, to the victims who are yet to get justice even after decades of despair and watching the perpetrators enjoying complete impunity."


The meeting will be presided over by Adv Yusuf Muchhala and besides him will be addressed by Justice Hosbet Suresh, Teesta Setalvad, Prakash Ambedkar, Maulana Hafiz Athar Ali, Adv Saumya Uma, Mohammed Siraj, Dolphy Dsouza and others.

The UPA in its first tenure had included the all-important bill in its common minimum program. However, NGOs working for the Civil Rights and Minorities fear that the Bill has loopholes and passing it in its present form would be dangerous.


Program Details:

Presided by:
Adv Yusuf Muchhala (Association for Protection of Civil Rights)

Justice Hosbet Suresh (Retired Judge-Bombay High Court)
Teesta Setalvad (Citizens for Justice and Peace)
Prakash Ambedkar (Bhartiya Republican Party-Bahujan Mahasangh)
Maulana Hafiz Athar Ali (All India Ulema Association)
Adv Saumya Uma (Human Rights Activist)
Mohammed Siraj (Movement for Peace and Justice)
Dolphy Dsouza (Bombay Catholic Sabha)

Our Lady of Victories School Hall, next to Sitladevi temple
Lady Jamshedji Rd, Mahim, Mumbai-16
Date: 26th March 2010
Time: 6:30pm to 8:30pm

Organised by:
Movement for Peace and Justice, Bombay Catholic Sabha, Citizens
Initiative for Peace, BUILD, Assoc for Protection of Civil Rights, All
India Ulema Council, Jamat-e Islami Hind, All India Ulema Assoc.,
Jamiat-e-Ulema Hind, Milli Council, Focus on the Global South, Ekta
(Committee for Communal amity), Centre for Study of Society and
Secularism and others concerned





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