The village also has a disputed tomb-like structure, which, according to the Dalit Mahar community, is the samadhi of Govind Gopal Dhegoji Meghoji, a 17th-century Dalit figure.
The cross-examination of Sambhaji Shivale (51), a resident of Vadhu Budruk village in Pune district, continued before the Koregaon Bhima Commission of Inquiry on Monday. Read more
While out on temporary bail in August, the rights activist sang a song written by Kabir Kala Manch’s Ramesh Gaichor for his friends and colleagues about the sordid conditions in prison.
Mumbai: Surendra Gadling, a human rights lawyer from Nagpur, has always considered courtrooms his stage. Between serious arguments, he would casually break into songs of cultural and political resistance. He would be commonly found invoking political theories and remembering shahirs from the Dalit community amid serious legal arguments. His court appearances usually attracted an eager audience from among his peers and junior lawyers. Read more
Video: The Prison Song of Surendra Gadling
hindi | 11min | 2021
51- year-old Gadling, a well-known criminal lawyer in Nagpur, was once a cultural activist, who sang songs of political resistance. The 11- minutes- long rendition tells you what it means to be incarcerated in Indian prisons. From food, water, to medical care, everything is a struggle, Gadling narrates. The song was recorded by one of Gadling’s colleagues and was made available to The Wire after obtaining his consent. Watch video
Witness Before Probe Panel Accuses Sambhaji Bhide & Milind Ekbote Of Instigating Bhima Koregaon Riots
Live Law / by Sharmeen Hakim
The Pune police “took away” research papers and evidence that revealed right-wing extremist leaders Sambhaji Bhide and Milind Ekbote instigated and initiated the riots at Bhima Koregaon(BK) in Pune, on January 1, 2018, an anti-caste activist alleged before an inquiry panel, on Wednesday.
Harshali Potdar (33) said she managed to re-collect a chunk of the lost evidence after the Pune police searched her office along with the homes of other activists in April 2018. However, core material against the real culprits of the violence is still unavailable. Read more
The accused in Bhima Koregaon case of 2018, Harshali Potdar, informed the Commission that she apprehended danger to her life for deposing the truth against Bhide and Ekbote in the Commission.
Harshali Potdar, an accused in the Bhima Koregaon case of 2018 for her alleged links with banned organisation CPI -Maoist stated before the Koregaon Bhima Commission of Inquiry that the violence was instigated by Samabhji Bhide, former RSS worker and Milind Ekbote, former BJP corporator. Read more
Advocate Ashish Satpute, the lawyer representing the commission, started recording her examination in chief on Wednesday.
Harshali Potdar (33), who was named as an accused in the Elgaar Parishad case over her alleged links with the banned CPI-Maoist, deposed as a witness before the Koregaon Bhima Commission of Inquiry on Wednesday. Read more
Human chain formed in Tamil Nadu seeking release of prisoners in Bhima Koregaon case
The Hindu / by Staff Reporter
‘It is a protest against stifling of all voices for democratic rights’
The arrest of thinkers, social activits and writers in connection with the Bhima Koregaon case is not just a blantant violation of human rights, but a threat to intellectuals who speak against Hindutva forces, said Madurai MP Su. Venkatesan on Wednesday. Read more
Activists Form Human Chains to Demand Release of Bhima-Koregaon Detainees
Newsclick / by Neelambaran A
Left, youth, Dalit and human rights organisations in Tamil Nadu slam the BJP government for muzzling dissent.
More than 25 Left, youth, Dalit and human rights organisations in Tamil Nadu formed human chains on the International Day of Democracy on Wednesday to protest the illegal detention of intellectuals and activists, including in the Bhima-Koregaon case, under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA), 1967. Read more
Mary Lawlor speaks to The Wire about the situation of human rights defenders in the country, the use of repressive laws by the government and more.
On May 1, 2020, Mary Lawlor, a Dublin-based human rights expert with over four decades of experience engaging in human rights work, took up the mandate of Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights defenders (HRDs) at the United Nations. Along with her work globally, Lawlor has been closely following the deteriorating human rights conditions in India and feels the country has repeatedly failed to protect the rights and interests of HRDs in the country. Read more
As many as 1,226 Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) cases were filed by the central investigation agencies and state police in 2019, a 33% increase from 2016, the Union government told the parliament. However, when it was asked to share details of how the law has been used, the government avoided answering in ‘larger public interest’.
… In July 2018, ahead of the 2019 Lok Sabha polls, a protest was held by lawyers and civil rights activists against the UAPA. Gautam Navlakha of People’s Union for Democratic Rights (PUDR), who also participated in the protest, had suggested that a movement against UAPA was needed and efforts should be made to seek the commitment of political parties ahead of the general election so that it is repealed.
At the same event, civil rights activist and lawyer Sudha Bharadwaj gave a detailed account of how the UAPA was being misused against Dalits, tribals and minorities. Read more
Mary Lawlor: Inhumane prison conditions for Bhima Koregaon Human Rights Defenders
By Mary Lawlor, UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights defenders
On 11 June 2021, I wrote a letter jointly with two other UN experts on the alleged inhumane prison conditions and deteriorating condition of 15 human rights defenders, as well as Varavara Rao who was granted medical bail.
Of pressing concern was the inhumane prison conditions and deteriorating health of the human rights defenders. The death of Fr. Stan Swamy shortly after this communication was written demonstrate the severity of the conditions in which the human rights defenders are being held. It is haunting to now read how Fr. Swamy’s requests to be transferred to hospital to receive treatment were initially denied repeatedly. Read more
Book release: I am not a Silent Spectator. An Autobiographical Fragment, Memory and Reflection
Exclusive excerpts from ‘I Am Not A Silent Spectator’, an anthology of writings by the late Father Stan Swamy, Jesuit sociologist and at 84 the oldest accused, when he died on 5 July 2021 after nine months in custody in the Bhima-Koregaon case. He writes about his life with Adivasis & their struggles against injustice, & the case against him and more. Read more
I am not a Silent Spectator – Why Truth has become so bitter, Dissent so intolarable, Justice so out of reach.
An Autobiographical Fragment, Memory and Reflection
Edition: Aug 2021
Publisher: Indian Social Institute, Bangalore
Paperback: 149 pages
The arrests of these activists were made on the basis of a First Information Report filed by Tushar Damgude, a former RSS activist and protégé of Bhide.
A peaceful event, Elgar Parishad was held on December 31, 2017. Over 35,000 people had attended it, where free speeches were given and people were informed they needed to be alert, remember their rights as free voices were being muzzled and the Bharatiya Janata Party-led government needed to be toppled. Read more