By Dr Meena Kandasamy (Oct 1)
Rama Ambedkar at a gathering in Bombay today demanding release of #BhimaKoregaon prisoners. She spoke on the sudden change in the media narrative of the BK riots in 2018 and the conspiracy that ensued culminating in the arrest of Anand Teltumbde and 15 others.
Switzerland: Petition demands immediate release of political prisoners in India
Today, Friday 1 October, SOLIFONDS and the Women’s Rights Group Zurich of Amnesty International Switzerland handed over several hundred signatures for a petition for the release of political prisoners (BK16) to the Indian Embassy in Berne, Switzerland. However, no one from the embassy was willing to receive the petition.
Indian trade unionist and lawyer Sudha Bharadwaj has been in prison for over three years – without evidence and without a trial. Sudha Bharadwaj is also known in Switzerland because she struggled for the direct employment of contract workers at the Swiss cement company Holcim in India, as ruled by law. She and 15 other human rights defenders, intellectuals, lawyers and cultural workers were accused of being involved in the violence at Bhima Koregaon and of planning a conspiracy against the government. Forged documents, which forensic investigations revealed had been smuggled into the computers of accused persons by hackers, serve as “evidence”. A trial has not yet taken place. …
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
Chennai based group to honour Stan Swamy on Independence day
The Telegraph / by Pheroze L. Vincent
A Chennai-based group is hosting a series of discussions and cultural events that will culminate in music and satire webcast on Independence Day in honour of Father Stan Swamy.
The event, titled “Kelvi Koothu” in Tamil and “Dirge for Democracy” in English, has been organised by the Vettiver Collective, a group that agitates on social and environment issues by conducting unsponsored cultural events. Read more
Proposed popular actions to resonate Tilak’s Swaraj is My Birthright, Gandhi’s Do or Die?
Counterview / by Fr Cedric Prakash SJ
The institutional murder of 84-year-old Jesuit priest Fr Stan Swamy, who died on July 5, 2021 while still in judicial custody, has shaken the very foundations of democracy in India. The importance and the urgency to defend democracy and all that is precious in the Constitution of India against repressive and anti-people laws, is perhaps felt today, as never before…
On August 9, the National Campaign to Defend Democracy gained added momentum when 165 movements, platforms and organisations, representing thousands of citizens, gave a call for a country wide action to save our democracy Read more
All-India campaign by civil society, labour and farmers’ organisations on Independence Day
The Telegraph / by Animesh Bisoee
The National Campaign to Defend Democracy will take a pledge to to fight draconian laws, and uphold the right to question and show dissent
Over 160 civil society, labour and farmers’ organisations will as part of a nationwide campaign on Independence Day take a pledge to fight draconian laws, uphold the right to question and show dissent and oppose State actions that “deprive us of the freedoms of speech and opinion”.
The movement, named National Campaign to Defend Democracy and spearheaded by the People’s Union for Civil Liberties (PUCL), the Jharkhand Janadhikar Mahasabha (a conglomeration of human rights organisations) and trade unions, will also seek justice for Father Stan Swamy. 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
Release BK15 and all Political Prisoners / Protest & Solidarity: Dhanbad – Bangalore – Varanasi – Bhilai – Pune
Pan-India movement call by Shahid Father Stan Swamy Nyayik Sangarsh Morcha
The Telegraph / by Animesh Bisoee
The morcha has held discussions with the Aituc, Intuc, SFI and social organisations for an all-India coordination committee
Trade unions, farmer unions, student unions and social organisations protesting against the death of Father Stan Swamy in judicial custody will form a coordination committee to submit memoranda to governors of different states for the repeal of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act and release of rights activists arrested under the anti-terror law on allegedly flimsy grounds. Read more
Bangalore, July 14
Varanasi demands justice for Fr Stan Swamy
Sabrangindia / by Sabrangindia
In memory of Fr Stan, Varanasi demands release of Bhima-Koregaon accused and other political prisoners
The Samiksha Sanskrit Manch, a Varanasi-based citizens’ group has demanded the release of those arrested under draconian laws.The demand was made during a tribute meeting and candle march organised on July 12, 2021 in memory of Adivasi rights activist and Jesuit priest Fr. Stan Swamy. Read more
Release Political Prisoners: CJP to Maharashtra CM
By Citizens for Justice and Peace
In wake of Fr. Stan’s passing, CJP appeals for release of remaining Bhima Koregaon accused.
Citizens for Justice and Peace (CJP) has once again written to Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, urging him to consider recommending to the high-power committee, that the remaining accused in the Bhima Koregaon case be released on interim bail. There are still 14 people languishing in jail after Fr. Stan Swamy passed away and Varavara Rao was released on medical grounds. Read more
NIA, NHRC, Modi govt and judicial system executed plot against Stan Swamy: Maoists
The New Indian Express / by Mukesh Ranjan
The CPI (Maoists) has demanded immediate release of all the activists lodged in jail in Bhima Koregaon case.
The Maoists on Tuesday alleged that the National Investigation Agency (NIA) framed Stan Swamy in a fake case and demanded immediate release of all the activists lodged in jail in the Bhima Koregaon case.
The CPI (Maoists) also demanded the withdrawal of all the cases filed against them and appealed to the writers, artists, singers, lawyers, and democratic intelligentsia to support them. Read more
Murder by the system: Cops, activists launch into verbal clashes at protest site
The Indian Express / by Express News Service
Claiming that Swamy’s death was “murder by the system”, and that he was treated inhumanly after his arrest, activists gathered under the banner of ‘Bhima Koregaon Shauryadin Prerna Abhiyaan’ and staged a protest.
Heated arguments broke out between police and activists gathered at the Pune district collectorate during a protest on Monday against the death of Father Stan Swamy, an accused in the Elgaar Parishad case. Read more
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
BK16 Solidarity in Zurich, Berlin, Frankfurt, Cambridge, Dundee and Online (pics)
Zurich, Switzerland: Solifonds in collaboration with the Frauenrechts Gruppe of Amnesty Zurich Chapter, held a demonstration to protest for the release of the 16 human rights activists in India. They also wrote a solidarity message for the prisoners signed by the people who participated at the activities.
Berlin and Frankfurt, Germany: IndienKoGruppe: Solidarity from Berlin and Frankfurt. Defending the Defenders of Indian Constitutional Values and Human Rights.
Freedom shall prevail, defend the defenders!
Dundee, Scotland: Amnesty Dundee – The BK 16 are a group of human rights defenders who have been imprisoned indefinitely by the Indian Government for standing up for human rights.
Amnesty Kenya: #BK16 solidarity from Nairobi, Kenya. Our members, staff and Board stand with the 16 Human Rights Defenders incarcerated in India #FreeBK16 #FreeThemAll unconditionally now
Sudha Bharadwaj’s health deteriorating, say kin, friends
The Indian Express / by Express News Service
Family members and friends of lawyer Sudha Bharadwaj, lodged in jail in connection with the Elgaar Parishad case, said on Friday that the activist’s health is deteriorating.
Bharadwaj is lodged in Byculla women’s jail in Mumbai, which has seen over 40 new Covid-19 cases this month. Jail officials said that Bharadwaj had last week tested negative for Covid-19. Read more
Release Sudha Bharadwaj!
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Bhilai (Chhattisgarh, Mai 1, 2021)
Sudha Bharadwaj, currently in Byculla jail, has been showing covid like symptoms
By Chhotubhai Vasava:
Sudha bharadwaj is ill in byculla jail fatigue, lack of appetite, loose motions and now she has also lost her sense taste and smell. She has applied for medical checkup. none done. She needs to be treated immediately +++
By N S:
Sudha Bhardwaj ill in byculla jail. Not getting treatment. Please please my lords in the Supreme Court take suo Moto cognisance and release all the bk 16 on bail +++
By Kavita Krishnan:
This is so awful. In Modi’s India we worry about our friends dying of Covid-19 – but also have to worry about friends imprisoned indefinitely on false pretexts, getting Covid-19 in prison, remaining undiagnosed and untreated.
Free Sudha Bharadwaj and ensure the best treatment +++
By The Polis Project:
Sudha Bharadwaj, one of the BK 16, is displaying COVID symptoms. She is not being provided medical treatment despite request +++
By ABA Justice Defenders Program:
Alarming reports that human rights lawyer @Sudhabharadwaj has been denied access to medical attention amid a severe #COVID19 crisis. We urge authorities to immediately allow access to adequate medical care and grant pre-trial bail to all #BhimaKoregaon defenders +++