Sandeep Pandey


We remember visiting the office of Sayed Manzar Mehdi, who was the Bureau Chief of Urdu periodical ‘Sahafat’ then in Faizabad just before the Godhra incident in 2002. He was vividly describing how Muslims in trains leaving Ayodhya for Gujarat were being troubled by the Kar Sewaks who had ostensibly come to build the temple.


He warned us that if nothing was done to stop them some untoward incident might happen. Nothing happened in Ayodhya region except for one Muslim youth being thrown out of running train and some minor incidents. But it flared up in Gujarat soon after.


Ten years later it was the turn of Manzar Mehdi himself. Now, an editor of ‘Aap ki Taqat,’ a daily which he has been brining out for the last six years as publisher too, in which the left page is in Hindi and the right one in Urdu with the slogan ‘Hindu Muslim are two brothers and Hindi Urdu are two sisters,’ Manzar Mehdi thinks he was targetted because he runs a newspaper which is critical of the politics of communalism. He happens to be the President of Urdu Press Association and attracts 80% of advertisements for his newspaper from establishments run by Hindus. He also runs a ‘Guldasta Society’ which organises a human chain every 26th January for promoting communal harmony. Hence, targetting him also means that saner voices will be silenced.


On the fateful night of 24th October, 2012, some people broke the lock of Masjid which also led to his office. The first floor office was completely ransacked, his laptop, camera, scanner, inverter and other such equipment which are key to his carrying out his journalism work were destroyed. Overall, he has suffered a loss of about Rs. 2-3 lakhs.


Those of you who would like to express moral support to Manzar bhai in this hour of confidence-shattering crisis in his life may get in touch with him at Manzar Mehdi, Editor, ‘Aap ki Taqat,’ Guldasta Lane, Imambada, Faizabad, Telephone: 05278 225881 (o), 260111 (h), Mobile: 9415717975 or

Additionally, we would also like to raise resources for him so that he may continue doing his journalism work as well as the much needed communal harmony work in Faizabad. If you would like to help please get in touch with us.

(1) Yugal Kishore Sharan Shashtri, Saryu Kunj, Durahi Kuan, Ayodhya, Dist. Faizabad, U.P., India, Mobile: 9451730269, e-mail:

(2) Sandeep Pandey, A-893, Indira Nagar, Lucknow-226016, U.P., India, Telephone: 0522 2347365, Mobile: 9415022772, e-mail:

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