Islamic Terrorism in India

Most Muslims are not terrorists, but most terrorists are Muslims

Shunned Muslims return to Azamgarh

Posted by jagoindia on September 28, 2008

Shunned, they return to Azamgarh
Deepak Gidwani
Saturday, September 27, 2008  03:59 IST

AZAMGARH: On normal days, the Azamgarh railway station is mostly deserted. But it has recently started witnessing hectic activity with arrivals suddenly going up. The reason? People who left their homes years ago to earn a decent livelihood elsewhere are returning.

All of a sudden, Azamgarh is an apologetic address to have. People in Mumbai, Delhi and several other big cities have begun to spurn those who come from this tainted place. The Delhi serial blasts, the Jamia Nagar encounter, and the arrest of five ultras from Mumbai on Wednesday — all from Azamgarh — has altered the destiny of many who left this backward reqion with dreams of making it big elsewhere.

“No one wants to have anything to do with us any more. Suddenly, we are strangers in places where we lived for decades,” says Shamim of Saraimir, who lost his job in Mumbai. “My only fault is I belong to Azamgarh,” he laments. “There are a lot of people like me who are coming back now… not voluntarily, but they are being forced to leave by employers and landlords,” he says.

Whether it is the Godaan Express from Kurla (Lokmanya Tilak Terminus, Mumbai) or Kaifiyat Express from Old Delhi station, every day trains disgorge scores of people at Azamgarh . And bring depressing stories of hundreds who bear scorn and insults everyday only because Azamgarh’s reputation has been sullied by a spate of unfortunate events.

“I have worked in Mumbai for 30 years in the same company. My employer who has trusted me for so many years called me some days ago and asked me to pack my bags and leave. He said he might get into trouble due to my link with Azamgarh,” says Salim who was working for a firm in Santa Cruz.

Abdul of Sanjarpur, Faiz of Sidhari or Salim of Chand Patti, all of whom have been summarily dismissed from jobs in Mumbai, are asking the same questions: “What’s our fault? Why have we been thrown out?” But, for now, there are no answers.

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