ANHAD activist quizzed for Karanj arson


Noorjahan Diwan, who is also president of Cong's minority women's cell, says she is being framed

The Detection of Crime Branch on Friday questioned a city-based social activist and Congress worker in connection with the October 3 arson in Karanj area in protest against the alleged anti-Islam film made by a US national.

Noorjahan Diwan, who is the president of Congress's minority women's cell and a member of NGO ANHAD run by Delhi-based Shabnam Hashmi, was summoned by the DCB to appear before it on Friday after a police team failed to find her at her residence in Juhapura on Thursday.

During her questioning, the DCB reportedly told Diwan she was named by Zareena Khan, another suspect in the case, as the one who played a key role in the arson.

"The DCB claimed Zareena had told them that I masterminded the arson in Karanj and conspired to attack Jama Masjid's Mufti. I have no connections with Zareena or anything that happened in Karanj. I don't even know what Zareena's role was in the arson," Diwan said.

"I had complained against Zareena two years ago as she was extorting money from Muslims and duping them into dubious investment schemes. She became hostile and and now she is dragging me in a conspiracy," she said.

In 2003, the city police had accused Diwan of running SIMI camps on the pretext of running tailoring and embroidery classes in Juhapura.

"The DCB and ATS used to grill me once in every two to four months claiming they had a tip-off about me running training camps for SIMI. However, when nothing was found, they eventually stopped harassing me. Now, the allegations have started again," Diwan said.

The police had earlier named Zareena as the mastermind of the arson. She is believed to be patronised by some BJP leaders from Ahmedabad. She also runs an NGO.

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