Ten days after an atheist DVK (Dravidar Viduthalai Kazhagam) activist was hacked to death in Coimbatore for his religious views, his father has said that if his son’s views led to his murder, he too would become an atheist.
H. Farook was hacked to death on March 16, about two weeks after he posted a photo of his children holding a placard with the slogan “Kadavul illai, Kadavul illai, Kadavul illai (No God, No God, No God)” on social media.
Six people have been arrested in the case, Coimbatore police said. All six are 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. The police also claimed that the men had vowed to murder people who challenged their faith.
“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,” R. Hameed, the 54-year-old father of the victim told The Indian Express 10 days after the murder.
Farook’s father works as the caretaker of a private guest house in Chennai. He told the Indian Express that he did not mind when his son chose to avoid religious rituals at home. “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,” Hameed told the paper.
Shajahan, Farook’s wife’s brother, also told the paper that Farook held a liberal view on religion. “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,” he told The Indian Express.
Rasheeda, Farook’s wife, is still in a state of shock. “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,” Shajahan told the paper.