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The 16 activists arrested in relation to the Bhima Koregaon case are victims of witch-hunt

The 16 activists arrested in relation to the Bhima Koregaon case are victims of witch-hunt

Frontline / by Anupama Katakam

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.
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On Sudha Bharadwaj’s bail plea, Bombay HC asks NIA, Maharashtra to respond by July 2

On Sudha Bharadwaj’s bail plea, Bombay HC asks NIA, Maharashtra to respond by July 2

Bombay High Court Seeks Reply On Sudha Bharadwaj’s Plea For Default Bail In Bhima Koregaon Case

22/06/2021

Live Law / by Sharmeen Hakim

The Bombay high Court on Tuesday directed the National Investigating Agency and State to file their replies in lawyer-activist Sudha Bharadwaj’s plea seeking default bail on the grounds that the Pune judge was not authorized to take cognizance of the charge sheet filed under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act against her, in 2019.
A division bench of Justices SS Shinde and NJ Jamadar passed the order on Bharadwaj’s plea under Sections 439 and 167 (2) of the Criminal Procedure Code.
Advocate Sandesh Patil for the NIA sought time to reply to the contentions following which the respondents have been asked to filed their replies by July 2 and the matter is posted for hearing on July 3.
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On activist Sudha Bharadwaj’s bail plea, Bombay HC asks NIA, Maharashtra to respond by July 2

22/06/2021

Scroll.in / by Scroll Staff

Bharadwaj argued that the judge who allowed Pune Police more time to file the chargesheet against her was not a special judge and hence cannot take cognisance.
The activist had moved the High Court for default bail on June 11. Bharadwaj sought bail on the grounds that the Pune Police did not file a chargesheet against her within 90 days, as required under Section 167(2) of the Code of Criminal Procedure. The inquiry in the case was later taken over by the National Investigation Agency.
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Sudha Bharadwaj Moves Bombay High Court Seeking Default Bail

11/06/2021

Live Law / by Sharmeen Hakim

Lawyer-Activist Sudha Bharadwaj, an accused in the Bhima Koregaon – Elgar Parishad case, has approached the Bombay High Court seeking default bail contending that the trial judge was not authorised to take cognisance of the 2019 charge sheet against her.
Her application under section 167 (2) of the Criminal Procedure Code cites RTI replies to demonstrate that the court of Additional Sessions Judge Kishor Vadane in Pune was not authorised to take cognisance of the 1,800-page supplementary charge sheet filed by the Pune Police in February 21, 2019.
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Andhra govt, Centre ‘collude’ to repeat Bhima Koregaon type case against rights activists

Andhra govt, Centre ‘collude’ to repeat Bhima Koregaon type case against rights activists


Drawing by Arun Ferreira

Andhra govt, Centre ‘collude’ to repeat Bhima Koregaon type case against rights activists

11/04/2021

Counterview / by Counterview Desk

In a comprehensive statement, running into about 3,500 words, India’s premier human rights organisation, People’s Union for Civil Liberties (PUCL), even as condemning the recent “unprecedented attack” on rights activists by the Andhra Pradesh government, with the Centre’s National Investigation Agency (NIA) and stood in “solidarity”, has said that the main aim of the “witch hunt” is to silence dissent.
Signed by Ravi Kiran Jain and Dr V Suresh, respectively President and General Secretary of PUCL, the statement, drawing a parallel with the Bhima Koregaon case, said, this time too the NIA cover was used to level the allegation that the activists were all supporters and “front organisations” of Maoists.
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NIA Raids 33 Activists in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana

10/04/2021

The Leaflet / by The Leaflet

On 31st March & 1st April 2021, the National Investigation Agency (NIA) raided the homes of at least 33 human rights and civil liberties activists, members of women’s groups, Dalit organizations, labor unions, and social and cultural movements in 31 locations spread across Andhra Pradesh and Telangana. The NIA alleged that the activists were all supporters and “front organizations” of Maoists. These raids resemble the ones carried out in the Bhima Koregoan case….
In the past few years, the NIA has frequently stepped in to take control of UAPA cases in states which are not governed by the BJP.
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Also Read: NIA takes over Andhra probe against activists (Hindustan Times, March 2021)

NIA Opposes Stan Swamy’s Bail; Calls PUCL, VVJVA ‘Maoist Fronts’

NIA Opposes Stan Swamy’s Bail; Calls PUCL, VVJVA ‘Maoist Fronts’

NIA Opposes Stan Swamy’s Bail; Calls PUCL, Visthapan Virodhi Jan Vikas Andolan ‘Maoist Fronts’

31/01/2021

The Wire / by The Wire Staff

The agency made the claim about the 30-year-old human rights body while arguing against the bail application moved by Father Stan Swamy.
In its latest, the National Investigation Agency handling the ongoing probe in the Elgar Parishad case has called a 30-year-old human rights body, People’s Union for Civil Liberties, a frontal organisation of the banned Communist Party of India (Maoist). The agency made the claim while arguing against the bail application moved by arrested human rights defender Father Stan Swamy. Similar claims were also made against Jharkhand-based Adivasi rights organisation Visthapan Virodhi Jan Vikas Andolan.
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NIA says Stan Swamy is working to achieve the goals of CPI (Maoist)

30/01/2021

The Hindu / by Special Corrospondent

Central agency argues for rejection of bail petition.
The National Investigation Agency (NIA) on Saturday alleged that Father Stan Swamy, accused in the Bhima Koregaon violence case, was actually accomplishing the agenda of Communist Party of India (Maoist) under the pretence of voicing concerns of the tribal community. It said that his bail plea must be rejected.
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Evidence against Sudha Bharadwaj ‘too poor’ to be admissible, says lawyer / A Peek into her Life and Journey

Evidence against Sudha Bharadwaj ‘too poor’ to be admissible, says lawyer / A Peek into her Life and Journey

Evidence against Sudha Bharadwaj ‘too poor’ to be admissible, says lawyer

25/01/2021

The Telegraph / by Basant Kumar Mohanty

Writers, activists and academics seek her release from jail, urge intelligentsia to break their silence.
Yug Chaudhary, lawyer of activist Sudha Bharadwaj who has been in custody since her arrest in the Bhima Koregaon case in 2018, on Sunday said the purported evidence against her lacked “sanctity” and was “too poor” to be admissible.
At a webinar, writers, activists and academics demanded that Bharadwaj be released from jail and urged the intelligentsia to follow her example and break their silence as the country’s institutions were no longer reliable.
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A Peek into the Life and Journey of Sudha Bharadwaj

24/01/2021

The Leaflet / by People’s Union for Civil Liberties

Through a series of interviews with Sudha Bharadwaj, PUCL shows the grim reality of the people fighting in tribal areas for the land they own. The book titled ‘A LIFE IN LAW AND ACTIVISM: SUDHA BHARADWAJ SPEAKS’ shows her journey into fighting for the rights of people, her cases and the story of the people affected by these laws…
The following are edited excerpts from the book.
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Sudha Bharadwaj on Why She Joined the Trade Union Movement and Became a Lawyer

24/01/2021

The Wire / by Santanu Chakraborty and Darshana Mitra

“We have to bring the Constitution to life. That’s where the lawyers and peoples’ organisations have to work together.”
The following is an excerpt from Sudha Bharadwaj Speaks: A Life in Law and Activism published by the People’s Union for Civil Liberties. Bharadwaj, a lawyer, trade unionist and rights activist, was arrested in 2018 in the Elgar Parishad case. The book is based on a long interview of Bharadwaj conducted before her arrest by two young lawyers, Santanu Chakraborty and Darshana Mitra.
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‘My mother misses home often’, says Sudha Bharadwaj’s daughter during book release

24/01/2021

The Print / by The Print Team

A book titled ‘Sudha Bharadwaj Speaks: A Life in Law and Activism’, based on a long interview just before Bharadwaj’s arrest in 2018, was released Sunday.
A new e-book based on a long interview with human rights lawyer Sudha Bharadwaj, who has been under arrest for more than two years now, was released Sunday.
The book, titled Sudha Bharadwaj Speaks: A Life in Law and Activism, is based on an interview conducted by lawyers Santanu Chakraborty and Darshana Mitra just before Bharadwaj was arrested in the infamous Bhima Koregaon case in 2018. It was released at a webinar by author Nayantara Sehgal.
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PDF copy: Sudha Bharadwaj speaks – A Life in Law and Activism

24/01/2021

By People’s Union for Civil Liberties

Sudha Bharadwaj speaks – A Life in Law and Activism

Publisher: Peoples Union for Civil Liberties (PUCL)
Edition: January 2021
Language: English
Sudha Bharadwaj’s interview by: Darshana Mitra and Santanu Chakraborty
Pictures credit: PUCL
Cover Design / Layout: Vinay Jain
Paperback: 316 pages

Access a free PDF copy of the book here:
Sudha_Bharadwaj_speaks (2,1 MB)

Please download and share widely!
#RepealUAPA

Book release: Sudha Bharadwaj speaks – A Life in Law and Activism [PDF copy]

Book release: Sudha Bharadwaj speaks – A Life in Law and Activism [PDF copy]

PDF copy: Sudha Bharadwaj speaks – A Life in Law and Activism

24/01/2021

By People’s Union for Civil Liberties

Sudha Bharadwaj speaks – A Life in Law and Activism

Publisher: Peoples Union for Civil Liberties (PUCL)
Edition: January 2021
Language: English
Sudha Bharadwaj’s interview by: Darshana Mitra and Santanu Chakraborty
Pictures credit: PUCL
Cover Design / Layout: Vinay Jain
Paperback: 316 pages

Access a free PDF copy of the book here:
Sudha_Bharadwaj_speaks (2,1 MB)

Please download and share widely!
#RepealUAPA


Video – Book Release: Why is the state afraid of Sudha Bharadwaj?

24/01/2021


en + hindi | 2h 53min | 2021

By People’s Union for Civil Liberties and more than 100 other organizations

Topic: Why is the state afraid of Sudha Bharadwaj?
Sudha Bharadwaj, a renowned human rights lawyer, trade unionist, is one of 16 activists incarcerated in the infamous Bhima Koregaon case for more than 2 years. A long interview conducted with Sudha over several days before she was arrested is now being published as an online book “Sudha Bharadwaj Speaks – A Life in Law and Activism”, and will be released at this webinar by the well-known writer, Nayantara Sahgal. Sudha’s daughter, Maaysha, her lawyer Yug Chaudhary, social activist Harsh Mandar, historian Uma Chakravarti amongst other coworkers & colleagues, will also share their experiences and memories of working with her.
Watch video @ PUCL Facebook (videos)

Programme – click to enlarge
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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Gadling in jail. Reason? As lawyer-activist he has been ‘unpleasant’ to India’s topcops

Gadling in jail. Reason? As lawyer-activist he has been ‘unpleasant’ to India’s topcops

Counterview / by Nilkantha Mandal, Sandeep Pandey, Kushagra Kumar

Surendra Gadling, now in jail in the Bhima-Koregoan violence case, is a human rights lawyer and Dalit rights activist based in Nagpur. He is known for taking up cases of extra-judicial killings, police excesses and atrocities against Dalits and Adivasis in Gadchiroli and Gondia districts of Maharashtra.
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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

In 2016, a Supreme Court Judge asked the state of Maharashtra, “Do you want to extract a pound of flesh?” The statement was directed against the state for contesting the bail plea of Delhi University Professor G. N. Saibaba. Saibaba was arrested in 2014, a justification for which was to prevent him from committing what the police called “anti-national activities.”
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Unfair To Target A Lawyer For Appearing For A Particular Client: Justice Lokur

Unfair To Target A Lawyer For Appearing For A Particular Client: Justice Lokur

‘Unfair To Target A Lawyer For Appearing For A Particular Client’: Justice Lokur

21/11/2020

Live Law / by Radhika Roy

I think that it’s unfair to target a lawyer for appearing for a particular client”, said Justice (Retd.) Madan B. Lokur, former Judge of the Supreme Court of India at a virtual session hosted by Delhi High Court Women Lawyers Forum and Women in Criminal Law Association.
“If a lawyer is dealing with hundreds of COFEPOSA cases, you can’t say that he is also a smuggler. I don’t think the Judge should ever get involved in the relationship between a lawyer and a client”, the judge commented.
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Video: Justice (retd.) Madan Lokur speaks on „Defending Liberties“

20/11/2020


en | 1h 29min | 2020

By Bar & Bench

The former Supreme Court judge is speaking at a virtual discussion hosted by the Delhi High Court Women Lawyers Forum and WCLA.
Former Supreme Court Judge, Justice (retd.) Madan Lokur is speaking on the theme Defending Liberties in a virtual discussion to be hosted by the Delhi High Court Women Lawyers Forum and WCLA. Justice (retd.) Lokur will interact with Warisha Farasat, Tara Narula, Shalini Gera and Sowjhanya Shankaran during the discussion.
Watch video
Read tweets/summaries by Live Law

2 years, 3 charge sheets & 16 arrests — Why Bhima Koregaon accused are still in jail

2 years, 3 charge sheets & 16 arrests — Why Bhima Koregaon accused are still in jail

The Print / by Apoorva Mandhani

Since 2018, stringent UAPA rules, SC’s Zahoor Watali order, NIA takeover and allegedly ‘inadmissible’ evidence has made sure that all accused remain in custody.
On 31 December 2017, a group of activists, political leaders and even retired judges came together at Shaniwar Wada in Pune.
Called the Elgar Parishad (Congress for Speaking Aloud), the organisers of this event included former Supreme Court judge, Justice P.B. Sawant, and former Bombay High Court judge, Justice B.G. Kolse-Patil. The event saw songs, street plays and speeches on various issues, including Dalit rights and criticism of the Narendra Modi government. 
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