To purchase a copy of the DVD, Indian’s Can’t Fly, kindly contact the SABC at: Programme Sales, 011 714 5846 email: Radasib@sabc.co.za
Indians Can¹t Fly will screen for the first time on 1 February, at 19H30. The 48-minute television documentary tells the story of Ahmed Timol, a 29-year-old Roodepoort teacher and anti-apartheid activist who fell from the 10th Floor of the security police building in Johannesburg in 1971. The documentary is narrated by Timol’s nephew Imtiaz Ahmed Cajee, author of, Timol: Quest for Justice, and directed by Enver Samuel. A police inquest concluded that Timol committed suicide while under interrogation, but questions remain whether he may have been pushed, or tortured to death and thrown from the window. It has been suggested that the roadblock at which Timol was captured was set up specifically to trap him – which could mean his murder was premeditated by police. Samuel recalls listening awe-struck to Timol’s mother’s testimony to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission in 1996. “There was Mrs Hawa Timol, an elderly lady and ever-grieving mother, relating in her home language, Gujarati, the painful loss of her son. It was an extraordinarily emotional moment, even in the context of the general environment of emotion that characterised the TRC. “I have since followed Timol-related activities in the media, such as the naming of the Ahmed Timol Secondary School by President Mandela; Imtiaz’s book launch and the posthumous award of the Order of Luthuli in 2010. Finally, media coverage on the Secrecy Bill and access to Timol¹s security records in November 2011 triggered me to make contact with Imtiaz. After a number of years, we have produced a documentary on one of the unsung heroes of our struggle,” Samuel said. Cajee described the documentary as “an important milestone in preserving Timol¹s legacy”. It aimed to enlighten young South Africans on the role Ahmed Timol played the struggle for non-racialism. The film traces Timol’s upbringing in Breyten, Mpumalanga, and then Roodepoort. Interviews are conducted with his comrades, former teachers and students, Security Branch policemen and Advocate George Bizos, who represented the Timol family at the inquest in 1972. For Cajee, however, pertinent questions remain on what really happened to Ahmed Timol: “I have evidence that the police roadblock was not routine, but a setup. My uncle¹s underground activities were monitored by the Security Branch and he was under police surveillance,” he says. These, among other facts, will be unearthed in the publication of the Second Edition of Quest for Justice, due for publication in October 2016 on the 45th anniversary of Timol’s death. Ends… This statement was issued by Oryx Media for the Timol family.