Powerlifter Majiziya Bhanu seeks freedom for COVID affected journalist Siddique Kappan
India's medal-winning powerlifter Majiziya Bhanu has spoken up about releasing covid-affected journalist Siddique Kappan who has been in prison since October for trying to report on the Hathras gang rape case.
India's medal-winning powerlifter Majiziya Bhanu has spoken up about releasing Malayalam journalist Siddique Kappan. The journalist has been in prison since October for trying to report on the Hathras gang rape case. Reportedly, Kappan has diabetes and heart ailments and was admitted to KVM Hospital in Mathura after he contracted the Covid-19 infection. Majiziya took to her Facebook profile to share a post with a poster that reads #Free Siddique Kappan Unconditionally.
Earlier, Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Sunday wrote to his Uttar Pradesh counterpart Adityanath seeking expert medical care and humane treatment for journalist Siddique Kappan.
The chief minister urged the Uttar Pradesh government to consider shifting Kappan to another hospital with better facilities. "People in general and the media fraternity in particular are anxious to know about his predicament and humans rights and are very much concerned about his plight," Vijayan added. "I request you to make sure that he gets all medical facilities."
Kappan, a journalist for the Malayalam news portal Azhimukham, was arrested in October while he was on his way to report on the Hathras case, in which a 19-year-old Dalit woman had died on September 14 after four upper-caste man gang raped her. The Uttar Pradesh Police later booked him under the draconian Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act and charges of sedition.
Three other men who were in the car with him were also arrested for similar offenses.
The police claimed that Kappan was arrested because he was going to Hathras as part of a conspiracy to create law and order trouble and foment caste riots. They claimed that Kappan and others were part of the Popular Front of India (PFI), a hardline Muslim organisation that authorities accuse of having links with extremist groups. The Kerala Union of Working Journalists has denied the police's accusation.
Who is Majiziya Bhanu?
Powerlifter Majiziya Bhanu remains a symbol of strength and inspiration. Belonging to an orthodox Muslim household in Malabar, Kerala to winning the Best Lifter Award in the World Powerlifting Association's World Cup held at Moscow last year, Bhanu has seen it all. Bhanu took an interest in the sport of boxing initially in 2016 during her third year of college. However, once she realized that she could not enter the ring with braces, she turned to powerlifting, and won the "Strong Woman of Kerala" award thrice in a row. She also won the Asian Powerlifting Championship in 2017. Bhanu participated in the 40th World-Arm wrestling championship in Turkey in 2019, before she went on to win the best lifter award in Moscow. Breaking stereotypes with nonchalance, Bhanu is a symbol of what women can achieve, if they just dare to dream.