Acquitted after 4 years in Tihar, Sopore man jailed again for ‘hoisting’ IS flag

sopore: After spending four years of imprisonment in Delhi’s Tihar Jail, Tawseef Ahmad Peer, 26, a resident of Badambagh, Sopore was re-arrested by the police at his home town Sopore. Justifying the arrest, the police have accused Tawseef and his friend Showkat Ahmad Sofi of raising an ISIS flag on one of the telecommunication towers in the vicinity of his residence during the last year’s anti-India uprising triggered by Burhan Wani’s killing.
This is another ordeal for Tawseef who has served four year jail term after being arrested in Jharkhand state in north India on February 12, 20123.
In past Tawseef was arrested on February 27, 2012 from HazariBagh, Jharkhand. Delhi Police had claimed that Tawseef, his cousin Ehtesham, and a boy identified as Shafaqat, also from Sopore, were arrested because they were planning an attack in India. When the charges were not proven, Tawseef was released on March 3, 2016, as not guilty. Only a few months of reunion with his family, Tawseef was picked up on October 30 last year from his home in a mid-night police raid. Tawseef is eldest among three siblings and his father Syed Peer, a private schoolteacher has struggled hard for his release. The family has applied for bail thrice but it was not accepted. He is languishing in Baramulla sub-jail for the last six months.
“I don’t know why my son has been arrested as he didn’t participate in any of the protests during last year’s uprising,” Syed Per said adding after his son’s 4-year incarceration ended, he had arranged a rented shop for his where he sold chicken.
According to Syed Peer, Tawseef has been charged with 121, unlawful act, which is waging war against state/union of India, arrested on 30th of October but on case papers, they have presented that my son has been arrested on 8th of November, 2016. Peer said that his son was recuperating from a minor surgery at home while police charged him of hoisting a flag. Interestingly, the flag on which Tawseef and his friend Showkat has been arrested was brought down by Sopore police.
It is heart wrenching for me to see my son in chains again. It reminds me when he used to be brought to Tis Hazari court in Delhi for hearing. Tawseef’s friend Showkat Sofi, too, has been booked on frivolous charges, allege his family. “Showkat got married quite recently. He was at his in-laws home when the flag was hoisted. He has no connection, whatsoever, with the flag issue,” Bilal Ahmad Sofi, his elder brother said.
Sofi is a resident of Badambagh Sopore and is a bakery maker by profession. He is also languishing in Baramulla sub-jail with Tawseef.