Tamil Nadu youth killed for being an atheist, father says he too will become one

According to police, clues from Farook’s mobile phone, which was found at the murder spot, led to the arrests.

Written by Arun Janardhanan | Chennai | Updated: March 27, 2017 12:50 pm
h farook , atheist murder, atmil nadu farook murder, bengaluru, bengaluru bomb blast, bengaluru news, farook, Tamil Nadu atheist, athiest killed, Dravidar Viduthalai Kazhagam, india news For my son, I was his best friend, says Hameed

THE FATHER of H Farook, the atheist who was murdered in Coimbatore 10 days ago, allegedly by members of a Muslim radical group, has said that if his son was killed for his views, he too would become an atheist.

Speaking to The Indian Express, 54-year-old R Hameed said, “If the police version is true, that he was murdered by a radical Muslim group, then they killed my son using wrong interpretations of the Quran. The Quran is one holy book that insists on and allows the right of dissent since the time of the Prophet. If they killed him for being an atheist, I have decided to join his organisation and do what he did.”

Fighting to hold back tears, Hameed said, “For my son, I was always his best friend. Even when he refused to attend the wedding of a close relative to avoid taking part in the religious rituals, I did not insist.”

Hameed, however, admitted that he was concerned about his son’s “assertive” atheism. “He was very assertive. He wouldn’t attend family functions as he would have had to pray there. I did not know that he was part of a movement for a long period. But my wife used to tell me to leave him alone as he never imposed his views on others, even his wife Rasheeda. He respected others.”

Farook, a member of the Dravidar Viduthalai Kazhagam (DVK), was Hameed’s elder son and used to run a scrap business in Ukkadam, near Coimbatore. On March 16, the 31-year-old was hacked to death, 15 days after he posted a photo of one of his children holding a placard with the handwritten slogan “Kadavul illai, Kadavul illai, Kadavul illai (No God, No God, No God)”.

“A relative called me at around 12.10 that night. As I was told of the attack, I started weeping and asking for details. But I realised that the worst had happened when I was told to perform dua (prayers),” said Hameed.

Hailing from a middle-class family in Bilal Estate at Ukkadam, a densely populated Muslim area on the outskirts of Coimbatore town, Farook was born and brought up in Chennai, where Hameed is still working as a caretaker of a private guest house.

Farook’s wife Rasheeda, meanwhile, is yet to accept her husband’s killing; on Thursday evening, their two children were playing together inside their two-storey house in a congested neighbourhood in Ukkadam, unaware of what had happened to their father.

Rasheeda’s brother Shajahan said what had devastated her was that Farook was killed by his friends.

According to Coimbatore police, six people have been arrested in the case, all daily-wage labourers, including the main accused Saddam Hussein, Abdul Munaf and Jaffer Ali, who were known to Farook. Police said all of them have confessed to their role in the murder.

“Rasheeda could not believe that Munaf and Jaffer were behind it, names that were so familiar to her. She has not been having food properly for several days,” said Shajahan, who runs a a small software business at Coimbatore.

“Having been brought up in Chennai, Farook had liberals view on religion. Many of his friends in Chennai were not Muslims and he was not following the religion strictly,” said Shajahan.

Munaf was also part of the atheist WhatsApp group ‘Allahu Murdhath’ run by Farook. Jaffer, who befriended Farook recently to start a scrap business, later left following disagreements over religion and God.

According to police, clues from Farook’s mobile phone, which was found at the murder spot, led to the arrests. Munaf called Farook out from home, at around 11.20 pm, on the night of the murder, they said. “Before the murder, there were three outgoing calls from Farook’s phone to the same number,” an officer said.

Police also found the owner of Farook’s SIM card, Sajuddin, who lives the life of a fakir, visiting shops carrying camphor lanterns. A resident of Walajapet near Vellore, about 400 km from Coimbatore, police traced Sajuddin to his native home in Vellore on the night of murder.

“He revealed that he had given his photo and ID card to one of the accused Ansath, a small-time real estate agent in Podanur near Coimbatore, for a loan that he was promised by a relative. By when our team landed at Ansath’s house on the outskirts of Coimbatore city, he had gone missing. He surrendered at a local court in Coimbatore,” said the officer.

According to police, Ansath used the photo and IDs of Sajuddin to obtain a new SIM card and gave it to Saddam Hussein, another accused.

“Most of the accused returned to the murder spot after fleeing initially. Munaf and Jaffer were there and later at the hospital, too. It was Munaf who informed Farook’s friends about the murder. He was also questioned by police at the murder spot,” said a senior officer.

Police have claimed that the accused were part of a self-radicalised group and had taken a vow to eliminate those who challenge their religion and faith. But relatives and close friends of Farook claim that the accused had a criminal background and were not regular at prayers.

“I do not wish to see this as a black-and-white case. Either they acted as hired killers for some other group or were absorbed by radical Islam groups for this crime. The idea of them being radicals does not match their lifestyle. Munaf was not attending prayers at the mosque for almost three months,” said a relative of Farook, who requested anonymity.

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    islamForFoools
    Mar 27, 2017 at 2:49 am
    Count how many getting killed in Syria, iaraq, Afghanistan, stan Palestine. You and your family will die same way don't worry, Islam will kill you, nothing else
    Reply
    1. I
      islamForFoools
      Mar 26, 2017 at 11:43 pm
      No media outcry when Muslims are killing non Muslims, atheists, I say we must take revenge on editors for this. They malign yogiji when he work for all but Muslims terrorism is pushed under the carpet by evil media. Editors must be punished for this.
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        MyTake
        Mar 27, 2017 at 1:25 am
        (Fighting to hold back tears, Hameed said, “For my son, I was always his best friend. Even when he refused to attend the wedding of a close relative to avoid taking part in the religious rituals, I did not insist.”)lt;br/gt;lt;br/gt;India needs millions of such good fathers and the society will change for the better without much hiccups! lt;br/gt;lt;br/gt;He infact is a true friend and father and people have a lot to learn from him. May God give him peace of mind!
        Reply
        1. M
          MyTake
          Mar 27, 2017 at 1:14 am
          ...All M u s l i m s (and may be others) who have been suffering at the hand of the I s l a m o-f a s c i s m should form a group of their own calling it whatever they want A, B or C, get help from other r e l i g i o u s groups who want to help them on humanitarian basis and confront this mob head on, before they take their breathing space!lt;br/gt;BJP can provide a platform (I don't see t o l e r a n t b r i g a d e having any problem with this) for those who want to be called non-religious as part of its duty toward protection of equal rights under the consution. This is more important than crying for g a y r i g h t s when millions still living below the poverty line!!!
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            Pratheeba
            Mar 27, 2017 at 10:18 am
            Our leaders r shutting their mouth..s..no courage...
            Reply
            1. S
              Sambit Patra
              Mar 27, 2017 at 4:29 am
              Brahmin because they applied their brains to leave islam.
              Reply
              1. S
                Sambit Patra
                Mar 27, 2017 at 4:27 am
                Brahmin because they have applied their brain and left islam.
                Reply
                1. S
                  Sambit Patra
                  Mar 27, 2017 at 2:48 am
                  I suggest all muslim atheists to first convert to Hindus and then you are free to explore god in your own way, believe or not believe..it is your your seeking of god. Be Hindu first. If muslims attack you, we will save you.
                  Reply
                  1. S
                    Sambit Patra
                    Mar 27, 2017 at 2:45 am
                    Islaaam, o the religion of peace..............Islaaam. Shame on Muslims and shame on Quran..
                    Reply
                    1. S
                      Sambit Patra
                      Mar 27, 2017 at 4:28 am
                      Islam kills lakhs every year and christians kill some millions every year. Correct your facts.
                      Reply
                      1. S
                        Sambit Patra
                        Mar 27, 2017 at 4:30 am
                        Muslims kill more dalits than upper caste hindus in riots. Correct your facts.
                        Reply
                        1. R
                          Rajveer Singh
                          Mar 27, 2017 at 3:51 am
                          What about Dalits
                          Reply
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                            Ang
                            Mar 27, 2017 at 1:03 am
                            Latest intelligence reveals he was murdered by trained in Israel RSS TERRORISTS just to celebrate the growth of RSS in Coimbatore and to enjoy the visit of the Butcher Modi.
                            Reply
                            1. A
                              Ali Raza
                              Mar 27, 2017 at 6:01 am
                              Pajeet Iyengar, your hatred of rationality and love for Islamist murderers is disgusting. You can't see the quiet of these so-called seculars who went on an award returning spree for the killing of one Muslim?
                              Reply
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                                arun
                                Mar 27, 2017 at 9:05 am
                                weird feeling.. all comments against the killing are by Hindus... none of the so called secular Muslims made any comment against the killing.. this is the main difference between a religion of peace,humanity, secularism and a religion of violence, aggressive in teaching..
                                Reply
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                                  Ayon
                                  Mar 30, 2017 at 1:51 pm
                                  Take another look, dear Sir....
                                  Reply
                                  1. A
                                    Ayon
                                    Mar 30, 2017 at 1:49 pm
                                    The thing that I don't understand is, if Farook was an atheist, then he was not only denouncing Islam, but all other religions in the world. Why, then, did the murderers, who are all Muslims according to reports, take it upon themselves to "punish" him, in their own psychopathic way? Quran never says "Kill all non-believers". It asks to punish those who denigrate Islam in particular. But an atheist, inasmuch as he's a non-believer in the traditional sense, has the openness of respecting all the religions while not believing in them. The existence of God, in some form or the other, is a canon in all religions. By disagreeing to God's existence, he merely stated his opinion, in a general way; not referring to a God specific to any religion. The interpretation of the Quran, in the minds of the murderers, is the reason behind this tragedy, not the Quran itself.
                                    Reply
                                    1. S
                                      Sane
                                      Mar 27, 2017 at 2:44 am
                                      Muslim terrorists are operating with impunity in the country.lt;br/gt;As an atheist you will be alone. I think you should temporarily become a Hindu.lt;br/gt;Then if the the terrorists even threaten you, at least you will have significant protection.lt;br/gt;I know this is a cynical approach. But you cannot fight Muslim terrorists alone.
                                      Reply
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                                        Balachandran Doraiswamy
                                        Mar 27, 2017 at 3:31 am
                                        Why siculars are not opening their mouth on this subject.
                                        Reply
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                                          Saurabh Ranjan
                                          Mar 27, 2017 at 3:19 am
                                          Why we don't have courage to ACCEPT different interpretations of the Holy Quran? lt;br/gt;Farook Hameed (Coimbatore) is a un-declared martyr of cultural/ religious freedom.lt;br/gt;Salute to him !!!
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                                            ah
                                            Mar 27, 2017 at 1:39 am
                                            this not related to ISLAM, the motive seems different ..................... anyways if he was Muslim he knew what will happen .................
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