The arrests and incarceration of 16 activists, known as the BK-16, on specious charges relating to the Bhima Koregaon violence case is part of the Central government’s systematic and methodical targeting of people who dissent and fight against oppression and for the causes of sections of society that a majoritarian government has no space for …
A look at the profile of each victim clearly indicates why the current regime feels threatened by their work. Read more
Protest to seek justice for Stan Swamy / Remembering the revolutionary who challenged everything
Pan India agitations protesting ‘institutional murder’ of Fr Stan
The Telegraph / by Animesh Bisoee
The protests are part of a series of public observances called by rights groups, trade unions, Christian organisations, Left parties and their student and youth wings
Human rights activists, civil society groups, mass organisations and trade union members staged agitations in Jharkhand, Delhi and other parts of the country on Friday in protest against the “institutional murder” of Father Stan Swamy. Read more
Delhi, July 23
Kolkata, July 23
In Jharkhand, Stan Swamy’s Friends and Colleagues Vow to Keep His Fight Alive
The Wire / by Santosh K. Kiro
A fortnight after tribal rights activist Father Stan Swamy’s death, his friends and those he worked were are still in mourning – and also determined to take forward his work.
On July 18, Swamy’s name was engraved on a stone in Bagaicha, the centre he had developed in Ranchi two decades ago to fight for the tribal cause. Every other day, different tribal communities from across Jharkhand are arranging meetings to pay tribute to the activist. Read more
OPEN NATIONAL CALL: DEFEND RIGHT TO DISSENT
Issued by several organizations across the country
Join National Action to Defend Democracy:
Defend Right to Dissent,
Repeal Sedition Law,
UAPA and Repressive State Laws,
Restore Right to Bail
The Institutional murder of the 84-year-old Jesuit priest Father Stan Swamy in judicial custody on 5th July 2021 has brought home to all of us the urgency of the need to take up the defence of democracy against repressive laws. Read more
Remembering Stan Swamy, the revolutionary who challenged everything – including the Church
Scroll.in / by Jyoti Bahen Urumpil, The India Forum
He was a fiery, ruthless messiah for the oppressed and exploited.
Stan Swamy’s mortal remains have been placed reverently with proper dedication. We all know that his spirit and commitment will live forever in the whole world. Swamy was gifted with a good intellect and a warm, tender heart that could almost burst out of anger for justice. Read more
Rage and Mourn in Response to Father Stan Swamy Death
BR Ambedkar’s granddaughter Rama Ambedkar demands release of all political prisoners
Scroll.in / by Scroll Staff
‘Those involved in the Bhima Koregaon case are facing fabricated charges and being called Naxalites, but they work for the poor, just like Father Stan.’ Read more
Stan Swamy Murder Has Lit A Spark Turning Into A Prairie Fire In Challenging Proto-Fascism
Countercurrents.org / by Harsh Thakor
It is most heartening how the masses of India are not taking the custodial murder of Father Stan Swamy lying down. We must congratulate all the sections be it of the workers, peasants, youth or students who have collectively galvanised forces to crystallise resistance against neo-fascism. A spark is virtually being turned into a Prairie fire. In the last few days a spurt of qualitative protests has taken place in Orissa, Uttar Pradesh and Punjab and all around the country. Read more
Rage and Mourn: Protests Across the Country in Response to Father Stan Swamy Death
Gaurilankeshnews.com / by Gauri Lankesh News Desk
BK undertrials have demanded a judicial inquiry in the institutional murder of Fr. Stan Swamy and that the Taloja jail superintendent Kaustubh Kurlekar
With the news of the demise of tribal rights activist Father Stan Swamy on 5th July, under judicial custody in the Elgar Parishad case, masses all across the country, as well as many rights defenders globally, have expressed grief and anguish at the Modi regime for its murderous hounding of those who have been resisting its fascist rule. Following the funeral of Fr. Swamy which was live-streamed on YouTube for his family and well-wishers to witness, protests have erupted throughout the country. Read more
Those Jailed In Bhima Koregaon Case Be Released: Opposition Leaders To President
Opposition leaders write to the President expressing outrage at the death in custody of Fr #StanSwamy. Say all those jailed in the Bhima Koregaon case as well as other political detenues who have been jailed for sedition under draconian laws like UAPA must be released forthwith.
Click to enlarge
Press Briefing by UN High Commissioner for Human Rights
By Liz Throssell, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights
Press briefing notes on India
Spokesperson for the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights: Liz Throssell
Date: 6 July 2021
We are deeply saddened and disturbed by the death of 84-year-old Father Stan Swamy, a human rights defender and Jesuit priest, in Mumbai yesterday, following his arrest in October 2020 under India’s Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA).
Father Stan had been held in pre-trial detention without bail since his arrest, charged with terrorism-related offences in relation to demonstrations that date back to 2018. He was a long-standing activist, particularly on the rights of indigenous peoples and other marginalized groups. While in Mumbai’s Taloja Central Jail, his health deteriorated and he reportedly contracted COVID-19. His repeated applications for bail were rejected. He died as the Bombay High Court was considering an appeal against the rejection of his bail application. Read full statement
Stan Swamy: India outrage over death of jailed activist
BBC / by BBC
Thousands of activists, political leaders and Indian citizens have taken to social media to pay tributes to jailed tribal rights activist Stan Swamy who died at the age of 84.
Many also expressed anger at the way he was jailed during Covid-19 and repeatedly denied bail. Read more
Native village in Tiruchy grieves Stan Swamy’s demise
The New Indian Express / by Jayakumar Madala
Scores of vehicles started arriving at Virugallur village in Tiruchy, moments after news of Fr Stan Swamy’s death broke in the media. People from near and far descended in the 84-year-old priest’s native village to express their condolences.
“He was a humble man who dedicated a lifetime to the welfare of tribal people,” said Swamy’s brother TPL Irudayaswamy (89). Read more
• • •
We are ruled by fiends – The have put a curse upon this land
Newslaundry / by Arundhati Roy
The excruciating, slow-motion, custodial murder of 84-year-old Father Stan Swamy, a Jesuit priest who spent decades of his life in the service of India’s dispossessed, took place in the show window of our democracy. Our judiciary, police, intelligence services, and prison system are responsible. Our mainstream media too. All of them were aware of the case, and of his failing health. And yet he continued to be ground down. Read more
Stan Swamy’s institutional murder must lead to a nation-wide movement against draconian laws and state repression
NAPM joins citizens and democratic groups across the globe remembering the life and struggle of Stan Swamy with pain and pride
7th July, 2021: The news of the cold-blooded killing of Fr. Stan Swamy by all the institutions that held him arbitrarily in custody for over 9 months has shaken not just the ‘conscience’ of India, but of the entire world. This incident shall remain a permanent blot on India’s claim of being a ‘democracy’, which oversaw the custodial torture and consequent ‘death’ of an 84-year-old human rights defender, living with Parkinsons, for a crime he never committed. As the world mourns this spartan saint, whose only mission was to fight for justice for the oppressed, we are left with many unanswered questions about the state of our nation and the future path of struggle. …
Fr. Stan is dead! Salutes to an extraordinary rights fighter!
By People’s Union for Civil Liberties (PUCL)
PUCL is extremely saddened and anguished by the death of Fr. Stan Swamy today, 5th July, 2021 in the Holy Family Hospital, Bandra, where he was undertaking treatment pursuant to an interim order of the Bombay High Court in his bail petition in the Bhima Koregaon case. What is most tragic is that even as the High Court Division Bench had started hearing the bail petition, news trickled in that he had passed away. Read full statement
Fr. Stan Swamy was a defender of human rights giving hope to thousands of Dalits and Adivasis
The Leaflet / by Joseph Xavier SJ and Harshita
Human rights activist Fr. Stan Swamy passed away in hospital waiting endlessly for medical bail. He was in jail since last year in the Bhima Koregaon case. Dr. Joseph Xavier SJ and Harshita write about the colourful journey of Fr. Stan Swamy in empowering thousands of Dalits and Adivasis and raising their concerns about justice and displacement. Read more
Fr Stan Swamy’s institutional murder
Citizens for Justice and Peace (CJP) / by Teesta Setalvad
Poor health conditions in Taloja prison amidst a raging Covid-19 pandemic, lies fabricated by the authorities, valiant efforts by the Jesuit-Human Rights Community and advocates like Mihir Desai and Krithika, form the vicious cycle witnessed closely by some of us in the tragic case of our beloved Father Stan Swamy (and other fellow inmates) over past months. Read full statement
Jharkhand Janadhikar Mahasabha: Mahasabha pays its tribute to Stan Swamy, who passed away today. His principles have been a source of inspiration for us and will continue to remain so. Stan lives on in our struggles and memories. His life and work in the thread.
NAPM India (July 5):
NAPM joins every justice loving person across the globe mourning the departure of human rights defender #StanSwamy and vows to continue the struggle for holding the criminal State accountable for this institutional murder. Enough is Enough. #FreeBK16 #FreeAllPoliticalPrisoners
SJES Rome (July 5): We are deeply saddened to learn about Fr. Stan Swamy passing away. His life was meaningful and his legacy of this commitment for the rights of the indigenous people will remain. RIP +++
Activists, opposition call out ‘custodial murder’ of Stan Swamy
Hindustan Times / by Deepali Sharma
Rights activist Shabnam Hashmi called Stan Swamy’s death “custodial murder” and said that the government has to be held accountable.
The death of the 84-year-old activist Stan Swamy on Monday amid his fight for bail on the grounds of health issues sparked off intense responses on social media from political leaders, activists, journalists, intellectuals among others. Read more
Killing Him Softly With His Song: A Requiem for Father Stan Swamy
The Wire / by Madan B. Lokur
The entire episode leaves behind a feeling that Stan Swamy was virtually thrust a sentence of death without charges being framed against him and without a trial.
Certain events occurred on January 1, 2018 in Bhima-Koregaon which led to the lodging of an FIR under various sections of the Indian Penal Code, including sedition. After investigation, offences under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act were added. A charge sheet was first filed against some accused persons on November 15, 2018 and a second or supplementary charge sheet was filed against some more accused persons on February 21, 2019.
In the meanwhile, the Maharashtra Police investigating the case searched the residence and office of Stan Swamy in Ranchi on August 28, 2018. Read more
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
Video: Father Stan Swamy’s 84th birthday celebrations online
Through his own writings from the prison, and know why the State fears him and why the Bhima Koregaon case is cooked up, along with messages of solidarity for his release and that of other Prisoners of Conscience.
Father Stan stands as a symbol of struggle and resistance against the repression of Tribals and has been falsely implicated and arrested since October 2020 in the Bhima Koregaon “conspiracy” case. A Jesuit priest and tribal rights activist, he has worked in Jharkhand for over three decades on issues of land, forest and labour rights in order to create a world where there is love, peace and justice. #ReleaseFatherStanNOW #ReleaseAllBK16Prisoners
Also watch: Repeal UAPA – Persecution by Prosecution (PUCL, Jan 2021)
In letters, Stan Swamy speaks about co-inmates, life behind bars
The Indian Express / by Sadaf Modak
Swamy, who turned 84 on Monday, was arrested on October 8, last year, from Ranchi by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) for his alleged role in the Elgaar Parishad case.
From his daily routine to the experiences of his co-inmates in jail, Jesuit priest and tribal rights activist Father Stan Swamy’s communication through letters and phones calls with his colleagues and friends gives a glimpse into the 200 days spent in jail by the country’s oldest prisoner arrested in a terror case. Read more
Birthday greetings to Fr Stan Swamy: True Meaning of Solidarity / Video: A Caged Bird Can Still Sing
Birthday greetings to Fr Stan Swamy, in jail: You taught us true meaning of solidarity
Counterview / by Fr Cedric Prakash SJ
It is rather unusual and certainly not normal to wish someone who is in prison “A Happy Birthday!” One’s birthday cannot be ‘happy’ in prison; however, in wishing you we celebrate your life: your mission and your message and above all, those whom you have so closely identified with, all these years so “Birthday Greetings to you dear Fr. Stan!
Our prayer today is one of thanksgiving to Almighty God for the Gift of You: to so many people everywhere: particularly the poor and the excluded, the Adivasis and Dalits; to the Country, the Church and the Society of Jesus. Read more
Music video: A Caged Bird Can Still Sing
en | 3:47min | 2021
By Bombay Jesuits
This Rap song is a tribute to Fr. Stan Swamy SJ on the occasion of his 84th Birthday (26th April) Since October 2020 he has been in prison arrested under UAPA in Bhima Koregaon case. He has dedicated his life for the service of the Tribals and marginalized in central India. A true prophet of our times he continues to be a symbol of resistance and a messenger of justice, peace and love not just in the world outside but even in jail. The chorus of this song- “We’ll still sing in chorus, a caged bird can still sing” is taken from one of his letters written from the prison. Watch video
Irish Jesuits International / by Irish Jesuits International
Fr Swamy is in poor health. He is hearing impaired and has Parkinson’s disease, and there have been calls from around the world – including from Pope Francis – to free him. He had been harrassed by authorities for some time and anticipated the likelihood of his arrest. He spoke about it in a video he made just two days before it occurred. But he is still in prison, and had his application for bail rejected on 22nd March 2021.
On hearing the news of the bail refusal, the Jesuits’ Social Justice and Ecology Secretariat (SJES) in Rome released a Statement of Solidarity in which Fr Xavier Jeyaraj SJ said: Read more
Canadian Jesuits call for the release of 83-year-old human rights defender
Broadview / by Kiernan Green
Jesuits in Canada and around the world continue to call for the release of Father Stan Swamy, an 83-year-old Indian Jesuit and human rights defender charged and imprisoned under India’s anti-terror laws…
The Indian Jesuit father advocated for the land rights of the Indigenous people of eastern India for five decades. In 2018, he co-filed a public interest litigation on behalf of over 3,000 Adivasi villagers imprisoned without the due process of a timely trial. Read more
Video: Campaigns calling for release of India´s Father Stan Swamy continue
en | 2:36min | 2021
By Rome Reports
This Rome Reports video above features efforts — including those made by the Jesuits — to free Indian Father Stan Swamy from prison. Watch video