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Category: Context (general situation in India)

Economic goals cannot disavow Constitutional vision: Anand Teltumbde writes from prison

Economic goals cannot disavow Constitutional vision: Anand Teltumbde writes from prison

The Caravan / by Anand Teltumbde

Anand Teltumbde, a professor and writer, is currently incarcerated in the Taloja prison in Maharashtra, under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act. He is awaiting trial in what is broadly termed the Bhima Koregaon case.
The ongoing debate on the Narendra Modi government’s programme to privatise public sector enterprises, or PSEs, has a certain ring of déjà vu. The proponents of privatisation argue, in support of the government, that private sector has always been more efficient than the public sector. Unbeknownst to them, this argument in its logical extension might lead to a preposterous but valid question: Why not privatise the government itself?
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by Bar & Bench (March 11):
Anand Teltumbde, accused in the 2018 Bhima Koregaon violence, has produced before the Special NIA Court, Mumbai the report filed by the Massachusetts-based firm Arsenal Consulting in his pending bail application +++

Have We Seen the Last of Conspiracies? / The Kashmir Model to Discipline Indian Media

Have We Seen the Last of Conspiracies? / The Kashmir Model to Discipline Indian Media

Have We Seen the Last of Conspiracies?

13/02/2021

Newsclick / by Ajay Gudavarthy

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.
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The Kashmir Model to Discipline Indian Media

13/02/2021

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.”
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Video: The Needle of Doubt is Now on All Matters, says Mihir Desai / India’s democracy in decline

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

12/02/2021


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.
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Also Read: Computer of Rona Wilson was compromised, malware planted from outside: US Forensic Firm report (Feb 10, 2021)


India’s democracy in decline

12/02/2021

Washington Post / by Joanna Slater and Niha Masih

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.
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To Be Punished Until Proven Innocent – Jails Are Full Of Undertrials

To Be Punished Until Proven Innocent – Jails Are Full Of Undertrials

Outlook / by Puneet Nicholas Yadav

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?”
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2020 Witnesses the Deliberate Destruction of Democratic Rights Organizations in India

2020 Witnesses the Deliberate Destruction of Democratic Rights Organizations in India


Solidarity poster, July 2020

Sanhati India / by Partho Sarothi Ray

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.
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Video: Tribute to Political Prisoners January 1, 2021

Video: Tribute to Political Prisoners January 1, 2021


en / hindi | 6min | 2021

By National Alliance of People’s Movements

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.
#FreeAllPoliticalPrisoners #EndStateRepression

In solidarity,
National Alliance of People’s Movements (NAPM)

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What India Lost in 2020

What India Lost in 2020

What India Lost in 2020

30/12/2020

The Wire / by Zobia Salam

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.
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An accidental, anecdotal year appears like a planned sequence with majoritarianism as prelude and chorus

30/12/2020

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.
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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 Cost of Voicing Dissent

The Dissenting and Defiant Citizen Is Indian of the Year

26/12/2020

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.
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The cost of voicing dissent: UAPA against G.N. Saibaba, Gautam Navlakha, Father Stan Swamy and others

26/12/2020

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).
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A Lookback At Arrests Made Under The UAPA

25/12/2020

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.
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Shifting burden of proof

Shifting burden of proof

Orissa Post / by Aakar Patel

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.
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For those dividing Indians to rule them, adivasis are clearly not farmers / Video: Protesting farmers

For those dividing Indians to rule them, adivasis are clearly not farmers / Video: Protesting farmers


Drawing by Arun Ferreira

The Wire / by Nandini Sundar

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.
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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.
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