New Delhi: Zia Ur Rahman, an alleged Indian
Mujahideen operative who is in jail in connection with 2008
Delhi serial blasts, has entered the fray to contest municipal
elections to prove his "innocence".
The entry into the poll contest of Rahman, who was
arrested in the Batla House encounter after the serial blasts,
has put focus on the controversial gunbattle in which his two
alleged associates were killed along with a Delhi Police
Inspector. Congress`s Shoeb Danish is the sitting councillor
and he is also fighting the polls again.
His entire campaigning is being led by his family, which
include his 63-year-old father Abdur Rahman, his mother and
sister, and is being supported by local MLA Asif Mohammed Khan
and a social activist Amanatullah Khan.
Abdur pleads innocence of his son, claiming that Zia has
been framed. He has taken the forefront in the campaigning for
his jailed son, who is facing terror charges for alleged
involvement in Delhi serial blasts and attacks in Gujarat.
"We meet people door to door and convince them about
supporting my jailed son. My wife, my daughter engage with
women voters. People are positive about supporting my son,"
Abdur, a retired stenographer with UP PWD, said.
Amanatullah said Zia is fighting to protect his family`s
honour and prove his innocence.
Rahman is currently lodged in Sabarmati Jail in Ahmedabad
and probably the only candidate in the April 15 polls to
contest from prison. He was allowed by a local court to
forward his nomination for upcoming MCD polls through
Ahmedabad`s Sabarmati Jail superintendent.
Local MLA Khan said, "we fully support Zia. We want to
give a symbolic message to Congress and the government. He is
innocent and we want a judicial enquiry imto the issue."
"As government has refused a judicial enquiry, we are
forced to take a stand on supporting him as a candidate in the
MCD election. We will go to people`s court and reply through
democratic system. We oppose any terrorist activity on the
soil of India, but it should be proved," he said.
Jamat-i-Islami chief Syed Jalaluddin Umari said as court
has permitted, he can fight the elections.
Asked on the issue of supporting his candidature, he
said, "people should take a decision themselves."