Mumbai: A former professor at the National Defence Academy (NDA) in Pune, who spent eight years in jail before getting bail in the 2003 Mulund train blast, now sells books for a living.
"Without any job for over two years, Dr Anwar Ali now sells books including `How to learn Urdu in 30 days`, written by him in prison," Jamiat Ulama-i-Maharashtra Legal Cell`s Advocate Shahid Nadeem Ansari said.
Ali was arrested in May 9, 2003, under the Prevention of Terrorism Act (POTA) in connection with the Mulund train blast of March 13, 2003. Even as he languished in jail, he was also arrested in connection with the December 2003 Ghatkopar BEST bus blast case.
Ali taught at the NDA until his arrest by the Mumbai police. The very next day after he was produced in court, the NDA cancelled his appointment on May 12, 2003.
However, he was acquitted in the Ghatkopar blast case, after the prosecutor admitted in court that there was no evidence of his involvement.
Despite his acquittal in the Ghatkopar blast case, Ali remained in prison, since he was also an accused in the Mulund train blast case, until the court granted him bail in February 2011.
Soon after his release, Ali urged NDA authorities to reinstate him to his previous post, but he has not received any reply so far, Advocate Ansari said.
Since Ali did not get any response from the NDA, he registered at an employment exchange looking for a job, but he did not receive any call even after a year. So he began selling books for a living, Advocate Ansari said.
Meanwhile, Jamiat Ulama-i-Hind President Maulana Syed Arshad Madani has written letters to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi requesting that Ali`s services be restored by the NDA.
In his letter, Madani has cited the case of 2008 Malegaon blast case accused Lt Col Shrikant Purohit of the Indian Army, who continues to enjoy his perks and salary, even after his arrest.
Madani also expressed his wonder about what he has called "the double standards" meted to people from the Muslim community, who he alleged, are first slapped with false cases and then left to wander the streets with lost careers, even after they are acquitted.