Vrinda Grover, counsel of Shamima Kausar, mother of Ishrat Jehan, has written a letter to Anil Goswami, Home Secretary, Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India, stating that Kausar and her family are being terrorized and threatened with the intention to intimidate her. Though poor and vulnerable, she and her daughter are fighting a tough battle to prove Ishrat’s innocence against powerful persons accused in Ishrat’s fake encounter. Text of the letter:
Yesterday, on July 10, 2013, the local Mumbra Police was informed about the threat to Shamima Kauser and her children. Accordingly, policemen were posted at the gate of the building in which Shamima resides. My client Shamima Kauser has informed me that in the dead of the night, at around 2.30 am on July 11, 2013, 4-5 men came and started banging on the door of their flat, aggressively demanding that the door the must be opened. Upon being asked by Shamima to identify themselves arid their purpose they kept banging the door. After some time these men announced that they were from the police. Shamima refused to open the door as it was clear that these men had come to bring harm to her and her young children. These 4-5 men kept standing outside Shamima’s door for sometime talking in whispers to each other and then left. Clearly, their purpose to terrorize Shamima and her children had been accomplished.
It is a well known public fact that after the demise of her husband, Shamima heads a family of young daughters and sons. Shamima and her daughter have courageously been speaking about justice for Ishrat Jehan in public meetings and demanding punishment for all persons responsible for her killing regardless of their position. Many of the powerful accused are yet to be arrested in this case. The CBI has rightfully sought protection for its own investigating officers, but not paid any attention to the vulnerability of Shamima Kauser, her children and Rauf Laia and Mohinuddin Ismai Sayed.
Even in the past attempts have been made on the life of Shamima Kauser, Rauf Lala and Mohinuddin Ismail Sayed. Despite written and verbal complaints to the police and the CBI no serious action or enquiry has been initiated into the matter. On the night of June 18-19, 2013, the vehicle carrying Shamima Kauser, Rauf Lala and Mohinuddin Ismail Sayed was attacked by armed men. However, the said incident was registered as a FIR of a road accident. Enclosed is the complaint sent is Mumbra police in June 2013 protesting against this FIR and seeking registration of FIR under Section 3017 IPC.
Shamima Kausar and her children have also reported that they are being followed and men in motorcycles are keeping a watch on their home and their movements.
There is a grave threat to Shamima Kausar (mother of deceased Ishrat Jehan) and her children as well as Rauf Lala and Mohinuddin Ismail Sayed. There is a real apprehension that attempts will be made to threaten, terrorize, intimidate and harm Shamima Kauser and her children as well as Rauf Lala and Mohmuddin Ismail Sayed to coerce and compel them in abandon their efforts to secure justice for the cold blooded murder of Ishrat Jehan.
It may be mentioned here that it is the constitutional duty of the state to protect the life of its citizens. In the present case very poor and vulnerable citizens are seeking justice against powerful persons occupying official positions, including in the Intelligence Bureau, Gujarat police and state executive.
The Supreme Court of India has repeatedly emphasized the need for protection of victims and witnesses in such circumstance. In accordance with the law, Shamima Kauser, her children, Rauf Lala and Mohinuddin Ismail Sayed deserve to be provided all necessary protection. Given the nature of the case and the profile of accused persons, placing a couple policemen as guards is likely to jeopardize their security even further. Appropriate and necessary steps are required to be urgently taken to ensure the safety and security of Shamima Kausar and others.
You are requested to ensure that no threat or harm is brought to the life, liberty and security of Shamima Kausar and her children and Rauf Lala and Mohimuddin Ismail Sayed.