Three days before four bombs went off in the textile town of Malegaon in north Maharashtra on September 8, 2006, the then Prime Minister Manmohan Singh asked chief ministers to “embark immediately upon a proactive policy to ensure that a few individual acts do not result in tarnishing the image of an entire community and remove any feelings of persecution and alienation from the minds of the minorities.”
Singh, a member of Sikh minority, was speaking in the aftermath of widespread arrests of Muslim men after 7/11 train blasts. Singh’s meaningful and empathic advice fell on deaf ears of the men-in-Khakhi when the very next day (emphasis added) of the Malegaon blasts (September 9, 2006) an unattributed source in Maharashtra ATS told the media that SIMI activists committed the crime to create “communal tension”. . It was the sheer determination, honesty, and professionalism of the late Hemant Karkare that changed the course of the terror narrative in the country.
Excerpts from the Interview:
“My family had, after years of poverty worked hard to better ourselves and become the middle class. I was, with my additional hard work now stepping into the income tax paying bracket; instead of allowing me to pay income tax, I was arrested and that too on such a heinous crime—terrorism and betrayal of my country. It has been unbearable”: Dr. Tariq Makhdoomi
“Reparation and Compensation of Victims Wrongfully Confined in cases of Terror should Restore the Loss of Dignity and Compensate the person to Social and Economical Stature”: Dr. Tariq Makhdoomi
“A Certificate of Honour should be Our Right along with Due Compensation from Authorities like the District Collector and others who sanctioned our wrongful Confinement”: Dr. Tariq Makhdoomi
“Thirty-seven persons were killed in the September 8, 2006 and later the figure was manipulated and brought down to 31. This is because six of the dead bodies of those who died in the blasts were mysteriously destroyed and the local Malegaon police had found that they were sporting fake beards”: Dr. Tariq Makhdoomi
“A few days after the September 8, 2006 blasts, bombs were found at the Mohamadiya Masjid Shopping Complex; and this was later denied” : ”: Dr.Tariq Makhdoomi