Waquar Hasan | Caravan Daily
NEW DELHI – Human rights activists, journalists, students and concerned Indian citizens came out to show solidarity with the Palestinians on Nakba Day, May 15.
Nakba Day is the day when the Palestinians were displaced from their land by Israeli occupiers and Britishers. To express solidarity with Palestinians, Indian National Alliance for Palestine (INAP) and the Student Islamic Organization (SIO) organised solidarity meetings across the country. Jamiat Ulema-e-Hind (JUH) issued a press statement to extend its support.
Palestinian ambassador to India, Adnan Abu Al Haija along with human rights activist John Dayal, senior journalist Seema Mustafa and Professor Apporvanand of Delhi University, addressed a public gathering hosted by INAP at the India Islamic Cultural Centre in New Delhi.
While addressing the gathering Al Haija, said, “When we talk about Nakba; it is a continuous catastrophe for the past 71 years. We don’t commemorate a single day – May 15. It has been 71 years and still Palestinians continue to live like refugees, while those staying in their country are facing hardships and massacre threats. Our children and women are being killed. The civilians fighting for their right to return back to their country, face such a situation.”
He added that Palestinians will continue fighting for their rights and won’t be making any compromises. “There will be no peace in the area till Palestinians get their right,” he said. Talking about India’s role for the Palestinian cause, he stated, “India has always supported the Palestinian cause and hopefully it will continue supporting.” With India bettering its relation with Israel, he seemed hopeful of India playing a mediator’s role for both Palestine and Israel.
Showing solidarity with the Palestinians, Christian leader Dayal said that as a journalist he had covered incidents of violence in Palestine. While covering those stories, he observed that women and children were being targeted in particular by the Israeli forces.
Mustafa, who also covered the Palestinian war, said that International media often refrains from showing the reality of Palestine. She added that most of the Palestine-related news is the Israeli version of the incidents that take place in Palestine. She mentioned that when she had gone to cover the war, it was only then that she discovered that the reality was the exact opposite of what International media had been reporting about the Beirut war.
Speaking on the issue, Apoorvanand said, “It is our sacred responsibility to show solidarity with the people of Palestine as they are fighting for their liberation. Freedom is everyone’s fundamental right”. He also said that Israel should not think that if they prolong the duration of oppression and injustice, the resistance will come to end. History says the opposite.
Jamiat’s media in-charge Azeemullah Siddiqui maintained that their leaders have also shown solidarity with the people of Palestine. “In a solidarity message, Jamiat President Maulana Qari Mohammad Usman Mansoorpuri and JUH General Secretary Maulana Mahmood Madani supported the Palestinian‘s right to return to their homeland saying that on this day in 1948, 71 years too long ago – the entire world witnessed a heinous crime against humanity when half of the indigenous Palestinians were expelled from their homeland and new chapter of settler colonialism was founded with apartheid in the Middle East. They were scattered across refugee camps in the cramped West Bank, the Gaza Strip and Palestine’s neighbouring countries. Now, over five million Palestinian refugees are estimated to be still displaced,” reads the Jamiat’s press statement related to the Nakba day.