Assembly wants Madani freed

via published on March 20, 2006

Pioneer News Service/ Thiruvananthapuram

In a shocking, first-of-its-kind act of minority appeasement, the Kerala Assembly has passed a resolution seeking the release of Abdul Nasser Madani, prime accused in the 1998 serial terror bombings in Coimbatore.

A special session of the Assembly was called up on March 15, when most of India was on holiday, celebrating Holi, to ostensibly discuss Kerala’s dispute with Tamil Nadu over Mullapperiyar dam.

After the House enacted a legislation on the dam to safeguard the State’s interest, Minister for Water Resources Thiruvanchoor Radhakrishnan moved a resolution seeking “medical treatment of the highest order” for Madani, currently lodged in the high-security Coimbatore Central Jail in Tamil Nadu.

Not to be outdone by the Congress-led UDF Government, the CPI(M)-led LDF Opposition sought an amendment to the resolution, seeking parole for Madani. This was accepted and the House unanimously passed the resolution.

This unprecedented and blatant attempt at minority appeasement comes at a time when Kerala is preparing for Assembly election and within days of the terror bombings in Varanasi. The eagerness with which both the Congress and the CPI(M), as well as their allies, have voted for the resolution reflects their craving for Muslim votes at any cost.

Madani, a Friday preacher known for his fanatical espousal of hardline Islam, floated the Islamic Sevak Sangh in 1990 to mobilise opposition to the Ram Janambhoomi movement. When that organisation was banned in 1992, he floated the PDP and with the help of a communal agenda established it in the Travancore belt of Kerala. He lost a leg in a bomb explosion.

On February 14, 1998, serial explosions masterminded by Al Ummah rocked the venue of Mr LK Advani’s rally in Coimbatore minutes before the BJP leader’s arrival, killing 59 people. Mr Advani narrowly escaped the attack.

Investigations revealed that Madani had provided shelter to those who carried out the bombings, including Ooma Babu alia Majid. He was also in contact with Pakistan’s ISI and involved with training Al Ummah activists in terrorism.

Kerala Police arrested Madani on March 31, 1998, for making provocative speeches. He was subsequently handed over to Tamil Nadu Police who booked him for the Coimbatore terror attack.

Since then, Madani has been relentlessly trying to secure bail, but his appeals have been turned down by the courts, including the Supreme Court which rejected his bail plea as recently as January 2005.

Unable to secure bail, Madani has switched tactics. He now claims that he is being denied medical assistance by the Tamil Nadu Government. When that claim was cold-shouldered, the Kerala Assembly moved in with its March 15 resolution


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