Kamlesh Tiwari’s mother said that Gujarat ATS did an excellent job. She demanded a death penalty for the accused. “The accused should be hanged,” she said.
Tiwari’s elder son Satyam echoed his grandmother’s sentiment, demanding that the accused be hanged after finishing the trial at the earliest. Tiwari’s wife said that the accused should not be allowed to waste public money in jail for long.
The two killers, Ashfaq and Moinuddin, are both from Surat. One of them is a medical representative and the other works as a food delivery boy. They had run out of money and had to seek help from their families, which left a trail, making it easy for the police to catch them.
The duo had left Uttar Pradesh after dodging the police in Shahjahanpur. They approached their family in Surat on the way to arrange for the money. Their calls were traced by Gujarat ATS that reached the killers in no time. Gujarat ATS DIG Himanshu Shukla said that both the accused had been arrested from Shamlaji near the Gujarat-Rajasthan border and that they would be handed over to the Uttar Pradesh Police after completing the formalities.
The murderers have confessed to the crime. Shukla said that information about the arrest had been passed on to the DGP of Uttar Pradesh. They killed Kamlesh Tiwari at Khurshedbag in Lucknow on 18 October. They were disguised in saffron to mislead the police, they have confessed. After the murder, they changed clothes at Hotel Khalsa Inn and then fled by train to Bareilly.
According to the Gujarat ATS, 34-year-old Ashfaq lived in Green View apartment in Surat and 27-year-old Moinuddin lived in a low-cast colony in Umdwara, Surat. They had left Surat for Lucknow in the night of 17 October. They were absconding since the murder of Kamlesh Tiwari on 18 October.
The main conspirator Rashid Pathan alias Rashid, Mohsin Sheikh and Faizan, who had plotted to kill Kamlesh Tiwari, were caught in Surat a day after the incident. Faizan had bought sweets from a shop in Surat. The bill from the shop was found in the scene of the crime. The killers had brought pistols and knives in a box of sweets.
According to the Gujarat ATS, in the initial interrogation, Ashfaq and Moinuddin confessed that they had committed the murder to punish Kamlesh Tiwari for his statement casting aspersions on the character of Prophet Mohammed.
Kamlesh Tiwari had referred to Mohammed’s third wife Aisha (the first and second wives were Khadija and Sawda bint Zama’a) who was married to him at the age of six after which the marriage was consummated when Aisha was a nine-year-old girl. Much as she was a minor at the time she got wedded to the Prophet, she had already been betrothed before. A daughter of Mohammed’s friend Abu Bakr, she was engaged with Jubayr ibn Mut’im, an agreement that was set aside after the death of Khadija.
The Prophet went on to take as wives many other women after Aisha:
|Hafsa bint Umar||624–632|
|Zaynab bint Khuzayma||625–627|
|Hind bint Abi Umayya||625–632|
|Zaynab bint Jahsh||627–632|
|Juwayriyya bint al-Harith||628–632|
|Ramla bint Abi Sufyan||628–632|
|Rayhana bint Zayd||629–631|
|Safiyya bint Huyayy||629–632|
|Maymunah bint al-Harith||630–632|
While polygamy was commonplace in that era across cultures, the case of Aisha sticks out because she was a minor at the time of her marriage and the Prophet, critics say, was supposed to lead by example. But most Muslims take offence when this is pointed out — they also say these women were ‘unprotected’ for widowhood or otherwise and Mohammed married them to offer them ‘social security’ — and the Prophet is judged on the basis of modern laws and present-day social sensitivities, as Kamlesh Tiwari had done, leading to demonstrations and riots in different parts of the country.