There is a need to now explain and create a sensible narrative about how conspiracies become narratives that favour the ruling dispensation.
The idea that “conspiracy theories” can explain politics is often rubbished, but now, after the recent revelations by Washington Post that a plot was allegedly hatched to compromise the laptop of jailed activist Rona Wilson, it has become imperative to see how conspiracies have been systematically used by the current regime. Read more
The Kashmir Model to Discipline Indian Media
The Wire / by Pamela Philipose
What is striking about recent developments in India is the manner in which the media, both legacy and social, have become entangled with the politics of the day. In fact, they have become the site upon which politics plays out.
Whether it is the raid conducted by the Enforcement Directorate on the offices of NewsClick, the ongoing counter-narrative to the farmer protests conducted by the BJP’s troll armies, the spiriting away of journalists by the police, the battles against tweets put out by Greta and Rihanna, the Twitter spats, or the ever-tightening surveillance net cast by the government on media operations, what is at stake, as Shoshana Zuboff reminded us in a different context, is “sovereignty over one’s own life and authorship of one’s own experience.” Read more
Video: The Needle of Doubt is Now on All Matters, says Mihir Desai / India’s democracy in decline
Video: Not Just Bhima Koregaon, the Needle of Doubt is Now on All Matters, says Mihir Desai
hindi | 23:12min | 2021
Newsclick / Bhasha Singh in conversation with Mihir Desai
In a special offering by Newsclick, senior journalist Bhasha Singh spoke to Mihir Desai, a senior advocate at the Bombay High Court about the new revelation by The Washington Post in the Bhima Koregaon case which has revealed that offensive material was planted through a software on arrested political activist Rona Wilson’s laptop. The disclosure is important because it almost makes it clear that electronic evidence was planted in the Bhima Koregaon case and there is a strong sense of fear that it may happen in other cases as well. Watch video
The future of the world’s largest democracy is looking increasingly less democratic. Prime Minister Narendra Modi is the most dominant Indian leader in five decades, while the country’s independent institutions have rarely appeared weaker…
One case in particular has become a litmus test for the rule of law and freedom of expression in India. Three years ago, police in a state controlled by Modi’s party began arresting activists under a stringent anti-terrorism law. Read more
To Be Punished Until Proven Innocent – Jails Are Full Of Undertrials
Our jails are full of undertrials. Are they being punished before their guilt is established in court?
“There is no reason why these undertrial prisoners should be allowed to continue to languish in jail, merely because the State is not in a position to try them within a reasonable period of time. It is possible that some of them, on trial, may be acquitted of the offences charged against them and, in that event, they would have spent several years in jail for offences that they are ultimately found not to have committed. What faith would these people have in our system of administration of justice? Would they not carry a sense of frustration and bitterness against a society that keeps them in jail for so many years for offences they did not commit?” Read more
2020 Witnesses the Deliberate Destruction of Democratic Rights Organizations in India
The large scale destruction of lives and livelihoods in 2020 caused by the COVID-19 pandemic in India and its inept handling by the government has been accompanied by another sort of destruction, much more deliberate and calculated. It is the destruction of the democratic rights organizations (DROs) of India, as part of a vicious plan of the BJP government to irreparably shrink the democratic space for a future that we can only tremble to think about. Read more
Video: Tribute to Political Prisoners January 1, 2021
As we enter a new year, 2021, full of challenges and possibilities, we look back and remember many of our comrades and follow-travellers who remain incarcerated and persecuted. Their only ‘crime’: trying to make this country a better place, with rights and justice for all of us, especially for those marginalized and oppressed.
To that spirit of resistance and resilience, we dedicate this video and our energies over the coming year. Stand with all those persecuted, jailed and vilified for standing with the human rights of others.
National Alliance of People’s Movements (NAPM)
There’s little room for doubt about one thing: 2020 was, undeniably, the year of loss. A loss of time, opportunity, plans, possibilities but above all, of lives.
In many ways, 2020 has been a surreal year. Some have called it the ‘longest year in existence’. For others, months flew by like minutes. Read more
An accidental, anecdotal year appears like a planned sequence with majoritarianism as prelude and chorus
The Leaflet by Shiv Visvanathan
A year ends in emptiness and the media will not notice it. India has become a post-truth regime in 2021. If that statement is antinational so be it as a tribute to all the great dissenters languishing in jail. It is Sudha Bharadwaj and Stan Swamy who might redeem this year, says Shiv Visvanathan. Read more
The Dissenting and Defiant Citizen Is Indian of the Year / The Cost of Voicing Dissent
The Dissenting and Defiant Citizen Is Indian of the Year
The Wire / by Sidharth Bhatia
Whether at Shaheen Bagh or on the highways outside Delhi, Indians are standing up for dignity and rights for all.
In an environment where dissidence is considered an act of rebellion, even sedition, where people are thrown into jail for standing up for rights, and where even a cartoon or a joke can get the politicians riled up, some Indians have let it be known that they will not get cowed down. Especially when it comes to matters of dignity and livelihood. Read more
The cost of voicing dissent: UAPA against G.N. Saibaba, Gautam Navlakha, Father Stan Swamy and others
Countercurrents / by Kunal Pant
… UAPA has been disproportionately targeted against minorities (Muslims, Dalits, Adivasis), activists, human rights defenders and political opponents… UAPA has been disproportionately targeted against minorities (Muslims, Dalits, Adivasis), activists, human rights defenders and political opponents… Cases in point are Sudhir Dhawale, Surendra Gadling, Shoma Sen, Mahesh Raut, and Rona Wilson – all Dalit activists – allegedly for being associated with the “Elgar Parishad.” (Bhima Koregaon). Read more
A Lookback At Arrests Made Under The UAPA
Mumbai Live / by Mumbai Live Team
As 2020 nears towards the end, we look back at three of the arrests that have been made under the anti-terror law by the name Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA), introduced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Read more
Uttar Pradesh´s law banning interfaith marriages also carries forward another innovative feature of India´s legal system in these present times. This is the shifting of burden of proof from the State to the accused. The `innocent until proven guilty´ maxim that under pins all law has been stood on its head and it is for the individual to prove their innocence to the State, which assumes that they are guilty…
Once the State has branded you a terrorist then UAPA requires you to prove your innocence even to secure bail. Read more
For those dividing Indians to rule them, adivasis are clearly not farmers / Video: Protesting farmers
The Bharatiya Kisan Union (Ekta Ugrahan) decided to mark December 10, International Human Rights Day, by remembering several prominent activists arrested under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA), especially those arrested in the name of Bhima Koregaon, and the protests against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act…
Mahesh Raut, one of the youngest of those arrested in the Bhima Koregaon case, is a graduate of TISS and was a PM Rural Development Fellow in Gadchiroli. Read more
Video: Protesting Farmers Demand Release of Arrested Intellectuals and Activists
hindi | 11:30min | 2020
The Wire / by Ajoy Ashirwad Mahaprashasta
Why do farmers wish to broaden the scope of their protest?
Farmers protesting at the border on International Human Rights Day demanded the release of all activists who have been arrested. The Wire‘s Political Affairs Editor Ajoy Ashirwad Mahaprashasta spoke to the farmers to find out why they wished to broaden the scope of their protest. Watch video
Principles and norms laid down in the Constitution of India / Save Our Constitution
Is India governed by the principles and norms laid down in the Constitution of India
The Leaflet / by Jacob Peenikaparambil
The Constitution of India was adopted more than two years after independence from British rule. It provided a common vision and set goals towards which both the government and people of India could strive as well as the foundational principles of governance of a nation.
Along with celebrations, this day is also for introspection for Indians. How far has the vision and goals of the constitution been realised? …
Dissent is demonised as anti-national by the government and the ruling party. The judiciary that is entrusted with the task of protecting the fundamental rights of the citizens is often shirking from its responsibilities. Read more
Save Our Constitution
The Leaflet / by Cedric Prakash
In times when the Supreme Court is selectively granting relief for wide-scale violation of constitutional rights, it is important to save the constitution by saving the Article which embodied the heart and soul of the Constitution according to Dr Ambedkar i.e Art 32…
Fr Stan Swamy and fifteen others who are ‘allegedly’ involved in the Bhima-Koregaon conspiracy case are in jail- some of them languishing for more than two years now. Besides these, there are several others imprisoned under the UAPA, and were also charged and arrested on the archaic ‘sedition’ law and even on ‘contempt of court’. Read more