Nearly all Bhima Koregaon accused have been denied medical bail despite serious ailments. Here’s what the law says.
On 24 September, the Bombay High Court will consider whether to extend the bail granted by it to poet and activist Varavara Rao on medical grounds, back in February.
81-year-old Rao had been granted medical bail for six months by the court in view of various medical problems that had kept requiring hospitalisation and repeated deteriorations in his condition every time he was sent back to jail. Read more
Income Tax department ‘surveys’ Newsclick, Newslaundry in tax case
The Income Tax department on Friday conducted separate “survey operations” at the premises of online news portals Newsclick and Newslaundry here, officials said …
Newsclick and its founders were raided by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) in February under provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act and that investigation is linked to alleged dubious foreign funding received by its registered company, which runs the news portal…
The ED had claimed that it is also probing Newsclick and its promoters for alleged transfer of certain funds to activist Gautam Navlakha, accused in the Elgar Parishad case of Maharashtra. Read more
There has been a great deal of anguish, angst and anger expressed at the death of Stanislaus Lourduswamy (1937–2021), popularly known as Stan Swamy, an Indian Roman Catholic priest, a member of the Jesuit order, and a tribal rights activist for many decades…
His death has drawn focus to the cruelty of the system which denied the right to die with dignity to a senior citizen who was suffering from Parkinson’s disease. However, the imprisonment of Stan Swamy and other political prisoners, including poets, journalists, bloggers, women activists, students, Dalits and Muslims, raises crucial questions. It is not just a humanitarian issue but a political one. Read more
The December 1985 cover story of Illustrated Weekly was about six foreign missionaries who were served deportation orders in Madhya Pradesh. After the magazine covered it, politicians intervened to prevent their deportation. In the corridors of power back then, there was a genuine appreciation for priests and nuns who serve among the oppressed in India’s underdeveloped regions. Stan Swamy, who recently died in prison, did not get the same appreciation from either politicians or the media. Read more
Independence Day / Resign Modi: Banner dropped from London’s Westminster Bridge
“Resign Modi”: Independence Day banner dropped from London’s Westminster Bridge
The Caravan / by Diaspora Members and Friends of India in the UK
On the occasion of Indian Independence Day, a group of diaspora Indian activists in the United Kingdom dropped a banner from London’s Westminster Bridge, demanding Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s resignation…
Press release issued by the group:
… The Modi regime has imprisoned thousands of people whose only ‘crime’ has been to dissent, to advocate for the most marginalised and oppressed groups, or to take part in nonviolent protests, under draconian laws like the UAPA. Elderly and vulnerable academics and lawyers, students and young activists, including thousands of Adivasi youth, are locked up in overcrowded and unhygienic conditions in the middle of a pandemic. Read full statement
Demand Justice India: International protest
en | 10:34min | 2021
By International Coalition for Justice in India
They stood by the marginalised. They protected lands, hills and forests from mining companies. They stood up to protect minorities. They did not trust the Indian government”s false promises. They are students, academics, lawyers, journalists and social activists, in thousands, are imprisoned in over-crowded prisons. An 84-year old Jesuit priest and human rights defender, Father Stan Swamy, has passed away while waiting for trail. Watch video
August 15: Zurich – Lotika for release of BK-16 – Berlin – Dundee
Stan Swamy’s endurance has left a message for the world: Archbishop Thomas Menamparampil
Eighty-four year old Father Stan Swamy who had spent decades serving the tribal people of Jharkhand, was arrested on trumped up charges, subjected to endless interrogations, and confined to Taloja jail for over eight months. As he battles illness, his endurance has left a message for the world says Archbishop Thomas Menamparampil who was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize in 2011. Read more
Making the 84th birth anniversary of Father Stan Swamy – the veteran Adivasi rights Jesuit priest languishing Taloja Jail, Maharashtra, for about four months for his alleged role in Bhima Koregaon violence – as the occasion, the Jharkhand Janadhikar Mahasabha (JJM), a civil rights organisation, has demanded that “lakhs of undertrials with no justice in sight” should be released immediately.
Pointing out that Stan Swamy too is an undertrial, JMM said, was involved in a study carried out in 2014-16, which revealed that about 97 percent of the surveyed undertrial prisoners “were falsely accused of being Maoists”. Read more
India’s Hindu Nationalist Project Relies on Brutal Repression
The Indian state under Prime Minister Narendra Modi is meting out vicious repression against dissenters to his right-wing Hindu nationalist vision. Yet that constant need to crack down on protests also reveals something: his far-right project is undeniably brittle.
… An event called the Elgar Parishad, organized on December 31, 2017 in the city of Pune, Maharashtra, was an attempt to bring together the opposition movements that had emerged during Modi’s first term. Convened by two retired judges with a history of anti-caste and anti-Hindutva activism, the event drew participation from roughly 250 anti-caste, progressive, and left organizations and featured fiery speeches, musical performances, and cultural programs.
The event was set for the day before an anti-caste commemoration in the nearby town of Bhima Koregaon, which celebrated the military defeat of the notorious casteist Peshwa rulers on January 1, 1818 at the hands of the British. Read more
Is Ignoring Criticism of Human Rights Abuse Affecting India’s Image?
The government’s intolerance of criticism by foreign institutions’ of its failure to listen to the global concern of the sharp rise in the violation of human rights and its persistent unwillingness to take action against the violators leading to the erosion of the democratic values in the country, has motivated lawmakers of western countries to push a bill in their respective parliaments decrying the claim of the Modi government of India being a democratic country. Read more
The ‘Buts’ To Freedom Of Speech In India / Why Bail to Vara Vara Rao Augurs Well for Indian Democracy
Despite the BJP-RSS’s repression tactics having a terrifying and chilling effect on the right to protest, two of India’s largest movements have taken shape since 2019.
By now, it’s fairly obvious that the NDA government has a standard toolkit for dealing with what it regards as troublesome movements. The script goes like this …
The police stand on the sidelines as first propaganda and then violence is unleashed by either the Sangh parivar organisations or others. We’ve now seen this in JNU (in 2016 and again in 2020), in Bhima Koregaon, in the Republic Day incidents, and most terrible of all, in the Delhi killings of February 2020. Read more
The ‘Buts’ To Freedom Of Speech In India
Feminism India / by Guest Writer
A trembling, disillusioned father told his daughter to flee her homeland for her safety. This seems like a plot taken straight from a classic wartime story fraught with separation and grief. In reality, such was the conversation my friend had with her father following the unlawful arrests of activists. The Disha Ravi toolkit case was the last straw.
The ‘buts’ to the freedom of speech in India only seem to point to a dictatorial reality, much like that of Airstrip One in George Orwell’s 1984, where even the mere thought of protest is met with prosecution. Read more
Why Bail to Vara Vara Rao Augurs Well for Indian Democracy
NewsClick / by Ajay Gudavarthy
Collective rights cannot remain intact without a collective spirit. The Bombay High Court has shown such compassion lives on in India.
It restores faith in the judiciary and augurs well for Indian democracy that the Bombay High Court has granted bail to revolutionary poet VV Rao on medical grounds. In a sense, the current regime and VV, as he is known among friends, are on opposite ends of the political spectrum. Read more