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US House Urges India To Probe Activist Stan Swamy’s Death In Custody

US House Urges India To Probe Activist Stan Swamy’s Death In Custody

Illustration by #bakeryprasad

NDTV / by pti

According to the resolution, Father Stan played a key role in one of the most significant Adivasi movements in contemporary India.
Three American lawmakers have introduced a resolution in the US House of Representatives, encouraging India to pursue an independent investigation into the arrest, incarceration and death of Father Stan, a human rights activist who died in custody on July 5, 2021.
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Also read:
Jesuit Missions repeats call to clear Indian priest’s name (Indcatholic News / Jul 2024)
Three years after Stan Swamy’s death in custody, activists recall his contributions to Adivasi cause (Scroll.in / Jul 2024)
Jharkhand police to probe into Maoist links with Stan Swamy’s ‘Bagaicha’, 63 other frontal organisations (The New Indian Express / Sep 2023)
Incriminating document found in Fr. Stan Swamy’s computer ‘planted’; similar tampering found in other Bhima Koregaon accused: Reports American forensic firm (The Leaflet / Dec 2022)

‘Bhima Koregaon 16’ go on hunger strike to mark Stan Swamy’s death anniversary

‘Bhima Koregaon 16’ go on hunger strike to mark Stan Swamy’s death anniversary

Hindustan Times / by Sabah Virani

Swamy, arrested in October 2020, was the oldest prisoner charged under the UAPA. He suffered from Parkinson’s disease and was denied bail on medical grounds
Fifteen of the sixteen accused in the 2018 Bhima Koregaon violence case, known as the BK-16, a moniker referring to the accused, went on a day-long hunger strike on Friday to mark the third death anniversary of Father Stan Swamy, the sixteenth accused, who died in prison, in July 2021, at the age of 84, awaiting bail.
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Also read:
Stan Swamy’s second death anniversary: Stand Up for What Is Right, demand Co-Accused  (The Wire / July 5, 2023)
Caged birds and prison songs: In chorus, Stan Swamy and the Bhima Koregaon accused kept hope alive (Scroll.in | by Vernon Gonsalves | Jul 2023)
How the system broke Stan Swamy: A cell mate recalls the activist’s last days in prison (Scroll.in | by Arun Ferreira | Aug 2021)

3 years after Stan Swamy’s death in custody, activists recall his contributions to Adivasi cause

3 years after Stan Swamy’s death in custody, activists recall his contributions to Adivasi cause

Poster by #bakeryprasad

Indian villagers vow to keep alive Father Swamy’s legacy

08/07/2024

UCA News / by UCA News Reporter

The Jesuit priest became a mot in the eye of the pro-Hindu government for standing with tribal people
People in a southern Indian village have vowed to keep alive the legacy of Jesuit Father Stan Swamy, who they say was forced to die as a prisoner three years ago because of his commitment to the poor.
Young people in Swamy’s native village of Viragalur in Tamil Nadu state have formed an association — Stan Swamy Youth Association — to immortalize the memory of the priest through their work.
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Three years after Stan Swamy’s death in custody, activists recall his contributions to Adivasi cause

05/07/2024

Scroll.in / by Scroll Staff

Activists stressed the need to take the human rights campaigner’s work ahead at an event in Ranchi to mark his third death anniversary.
Three years after human rights activist and Catholic priest Stan Swamy died in police custody in a Mumbai hospital, his name remains to be cleared of the allegations against him in the 2018 Bhima Koregaon case.
This is what activist Aloka Kujur reminded her fellow activists and supporters who had gathered at the Bagaicha Social Research Centre in Ranchi on Friday to commemorate Swamy’s third death anniversary.
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Celebrating the Spirit of Stan Swamy

05/07/2024

Sabrangindia / by Fr Cedric Prakash SJ

When on 5 July 2021, they killed Jesuit Fr Stan Swamy, they succeeded only in destroying the frail body of an 84-year-old Catholic Priest. Today, three years after that fateful day, the Spirit of Stan Swamy lives on. Millions of people: the Adivasis and the Dalits, the excluded and the exploited, the marginalised and the exploited, the displaced and the denied, the poor and other vulnerable, the academics and the writers, human rights defenders, other civil society and political leaders remember him with fondly.
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Father Stan Swamy: “I am not a silent spectator!”

05/07/2024

Christiantoday.co.in / by Fr. Cedric Prakash SJ

Just before his arrest in October 2020, in a video-message that went viral, Fr. Stan Swamy said, “What is happening to me is not something unique happening to me alone. It is a broader process that is taking place all over the country. We are all aware how prominent intellectuals, lawyers’ writers, poets, activists, students, leaders, they are all put into jail because they have expressed their dissent or raised questions about the ruling powers of India. We are part of the process. In a way I am happy to be part of this process. I am not a silent spectator, but part of the game, and ready to pay the price whatever be it.”
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Video: Testimony of Stan Swamy, two days before his arrest on 8 October 2020.


en | 7:48 min | Oct 6, 2020
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Also read:
Caged birds and prison songs: In chorus, Stan Swamy and the Bhima Koregaon accused kept hope alive (Scroll.in | by Vernon Gonsalves | Jul 2023)
How the system broke Stan Swamy: A cell mate recalls the activist’s last days in prison (Scroll.in | by Arun Ferreira | Aug 2021)

Illustration by #bakeryprasad

Although we received news by late evening on October 8, 2020, of Father Stan Swamy’s arrest, we were quite shocked to see him the next morning in the adjourning barrack conversing with inmates in his impeccable Hindi.
I was at that time lodged in a cell at the prison hospital with my co- accused Varavara Rao (or VV) and Vernon Gonsalves.
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Incriminating document found in Fr. Stan Swamy’s computer ‘planted’; similar tampering found in other Bhima Koregaon accused: Reports American forensic firm (The Leaflet / Dec 2022)

▪ Framed to Die – The Case of Stan Swamy

By Peoples Union for Democratic Rights (PUDR)
Edition: Aug 2021
Publisher: Peoples Union for Democratic Rights, Delhi
Language: English
Paperback: 45 pages
Access a free PDF copy of the book here

Release India’s Political Prisoners / Video: 10 Political prisoners of the Modi era

Release India’s Political Prisoners / Video: 10 Political prisoners of the Modi era

Jacobin.com / by Safa Ahmed

Since reaching power, Narendra Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party has jailed political critics using bogus terrorism and incitement charges. But an electoral setback for his party offers hope of change in India and a crack in his authoritarian Hindutva order.
… There are those who do make it out of prison. But in one harrowing case, imprisonment under the UAPA became a death sentence. In 2018, violent clashes broke out between Dalits and Hindu militant groups in Bhima Koregaon, a village in Maharashtra state. Instead of arresting any militants, police in the state arrested sixteen eminent activists, academics, and lawyers over the next two years — all of whom were involved in civil rights work supporting marginalized Dalits and tribal Adivasi communities.
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Video: Meet 10 ‘political prisoners’ of the Narendra Modi regime in jail without trial

By The Telegraph

en | 4:45 | 2024
From Kashmir to Pune, from the barrage of detainees from the CAA-NRC protests to the Delhi riots case accused to the infamous Bhima Koregaon arrests, Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s time in office has been marked by a number of ‘political prisoners’ who remain indefinitely behind bars, with their trials still pending.
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Read more: Meet 10 ‘political prisoners’ of the Narendra Modi regime in jail without trial (The Telegraph / June 2024)


Also Read:
How The Indian Prison System Denies Basic Freedoms, Rights And Dignity To Political Prisoners (The Polis Project / June 2024)
The Opposition Must Demand the Release of all Political Prisoners (The Wire / June 2024)
Punished without trial: How India’s political prisoners are being denied basic rights in jail (Scroll.in / Aug 2022)
India’s Hindu Nationalist Project Relies on Brutal Repression (Jacobinmag / April 2021)

Jesuit Missions repeats call to clear Stan Swamy’s name

Jesuit Missions repeats call to clear Stan Swamy’s name

Jesuit Missions repeats call to clear Indian priest’s name

03/07/2024

Indcatholicnews.com / by ICN

Jesuit Missions has once again written to the Indian High Commission as part of its campaign to clear the name of the late human rights’ advocate and Jesuit priest Fr Stan Swamy.
Br Stephen Power SJ, Chairman of Jesuit Missions’ Management Board, sent a letter to Vikram Doraiswami, High Commissioner of India to the UK, yesterday (July 2) requesting a meeting to discuss the subject of Fr Stan’s imprisonment and death.
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The Search for Democracy in India

Mon, 8 Jul 2024 18:45 BST
London Jesuit Centre, Mount Street, London, UK

Join us for a talk by anthropologist and author Professor Alpa Shah, exploring the state of democracy in India.
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Let’s start Father Stan Swamy’s beatification process

01/07/2024

UCA News / by John Dayal

The Jesuit martyr who was falsely targeted by Indian probe agencies is already a saint to the tribal people he served
… Modi’s government has also not taken any step to exonerate Jesuit priest and social activist Stanislaus Lourduswamy — Father Stan Swamy for short — who it had arrested on charges of being a part of a conspiracy to assassinate him.
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Also read:

▪ How the system broke Stan Swamy: A cell mate recalls the activist’s last days in prison (Scroll.in / Aug 12, 2021 / by Arun Ferreira)

Illustration by #bakeryprasad
The 84-year-old Jesuit priest and tribal rights activist, who had been arrested in the Bhima Koregaon case in October, died on July 5.

Although we received news by late evening on October 8, 2020, of Father Stan Swamy’s arrest, we were quite shocked to see him the next morning in the adjourning barrack conversing with inmates in his impeccable Hindi.
I was at that time lodged in a cell at the prison hospital with my co- accused Varavara Rao (or VV) and Vernon Gonsalves.

Read more

Book Review | Those who refuse to be caged

Book Review | Those who refuse to be caged

The Telegraph / by Lalit Panda

In The Incarcerations, Alpa Shah provides a survey of these men and women that allows us to understand what truly connects them
For many who have followed the news regarding the Bhima Koregaon case, the saga of arrests, press conferences, cyber-forensic reports, bail hearings, statements of condemnation, and protests has gone on long enough and been spread out so thinly that fatigue and forgetfulness are real threats.
Naturally, the opposite has been the case for the 16 individuals arraigned by investigative agencies in the matter. For these persons, the case has illuminated the state of our democracy, the nature of threats against it, and the identity of its most strident defenders.
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The Incarcerations: Bhima Koregaon And The Search For Democracy In India

Author: Alpa Shah
Publishing Date: March 2024
Publisher: Harper Collins Publisher
Pages: 672
Read more / order


Also read:

Bhima Koregaon: Challenging Caste. Brahminism’s wrath against dreamers of equality
Author: Ajaz Ashraf  
Publisher: AuthorsUpFront
Publishing Date: June 2024
Binding: Paperback
Language: English
Pages: 496
Read more/order

Book Excerpt The story of an ‘Urban Naxal’ (Deccan Herald | by Alpa Shah | April 2024 )
A new book recounts how 16 activists were imprisoned as terrorists, without trial (Scroll.in | by Alpa Shah | March 2024)

Before Arundhati Roy, Writers, Human Rights Activists & Journalists Were Slapped With UAPA

Before Arundhati Roy, Writers, Human Rights Activists & Journalists Were Slapped With UAPA

Outlook / by Outlook Web Desk

The draconian UAPA has drawn criticism from several Supreme Court judges. However, it continues to be used against prominent writers, activists and journalists.
A celebrated Booker Prize-winning author and human rights activist, Arundhati Roy became the latest target of India’s draconian law – Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, after Delhi’s Lieutenant General approved her prosecution on a complaint lodged 14 years ago. The approval comes days after Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his BJP-led NDA came to power for the third time. Human rights organisations have accused the government of misusing the law to silence critics.
Since 2014, at least 6,900 UAPA cases have been lodged until 2020, according to NCRB data. 
Read more


Also read:
▪ Meet 10 ‘political prisoners’ of the Narendra Modi regime in jail without trial (Telegraph / June 2024)
▪ Legal experts call for a repeal of UAPA over misuse and rights violations (Frontline / May 2024)
▪ UAPA – CRIMINALISING DISSENT AND STATE TERROR – Study of UAPA Abuse in India, 2009-2022 (PUCL / Sep 2022). Download report
How Governments Avoid Due Process by Declaring Groups as ‘Front Organisations’ of Banned Entities (The Wire / Sep 2020)

Podcasts: What does the death of a jailed priest say about India’s democracy? / ‘India’s Watergate’

Podcasts: What does the death of a jailed priest say about India’s democracy? / ‘India’s Watergate’

poster by @/bakeryprasad

What does the death of a jailed Jesuit priest say about India’s democracy under Modi?

02/06/2024

npr / by Lauren Frayer

MUMBAI, India — Two days before police finally came to arrest him, the Rev. Stan Swamy recorded a video of himself speaking directly into the camera.
“They want to put me out of the way,” the ailing 83-year-old Jesuit priest said.
His voice sounded frail. But what he was saying was explosive.

The government of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, he said, was targeting him in retaliation for his advocacy on behalf of Indigenous people in Indian jails.
Read more / 33-Minute Listen


‘India’s Watergate’: A tale of political manipulation, disinformation and nationalism

29/05/2024

Npr / by Lauren Frayer

It started with a civil rights rally, and ended in riots. NPR investigates how 16 of India’s most famous human rights activists were jailed for an alleged terror plot. They say they were framed.
India is wrapping up elections this week. We’re going to take you back to the last Indian elections five years ago, to a scandal that some call India’s Watergate. It has not brought down Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government. In fact, he is expected to win a third term. The scandal started with a civil rights campaign that led to hundreds of arrests, allegations of computer hacking and the death of an elderly priest behind bars. NPR’s Lauren Frayer has our story.
Read more / 8-Minute Listen

‘BK 16’: Victims of Digital Invasion of the State / The Bhima Koregaon saga of injustice

‘BK 16’: Victims of Digital Invasion of the State / The Bhima Koregaon saga of injustice

‘BK 16’: Victims of Digital Invasion of the State

31/05/2024

Countercurrents.org / by Mubashir VP

Hindutva fascism grew and rose to power by abusing the facilities of formal democracy, spreading hatred under the guise of freedom of speech.
The Bhima Koregaon case and the arrests and imprisonment of human rights activists under the UAPA Act, which critics point out as an example of human rights violations stretching back to the two terms of the Narendra Modi government, have drawn much attention internationally. Moreover, it became notorious as a sign of the government’s reactionary approach to democratic rights, intolerance of dissident voices, and an attempt to terrorise civic life.
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The Bhima Koregaon saga of injustice

31/05/2024

Tribune India / by Julio Ribeiro

Charges yet to be framed against the accused, even though the first arrests were made in 2018
ALPA Shah, whose family hailed from Gujarat, was raised in Nairobi, where my deceased wife, Melba, was born and lived till the age of 10. The Mau Mau movement in Kenya forced many families of Indian origin to leave that country. The Menezes of Goa – to which my wife belonged – was among the few families that returned to India. They sailed back to Goa, while Alpa emigrated to England.
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March 2024 | Scroll.in | by Alpa Shah
An excerpt from ‘The Incarcerations: Bhima Koregaon and the Search for Democracy in India’, by Alpa Shah.
Read excerpt


The Bhima Koregaon Case: A Grave Injustice and Human Rights Crisis

31/05/2024

Radian News / by Mohd Naushad Khan

The Bhima Koregaon case is a complex legal and political matter in India, stemming from the violence that occurred on January 1, 2018, during the bicentenary celebration of the Battle of Bhima Koregaon in Maharashtra. This event holds significant historical importance, particularly for Dalits, who commemorate the British East India Company’s defeat of the Peshwa forces as a symbol of resistance against caste oppression.
Read more


Also read:
Incriminating document found in Fr. Stan Swamy’s computer ‘planted’; similar tampering found in other Bhima Koregaon accused: Reports American forensic firm (The Leaflet / Dec 2022)
Fabricating Evidence Against Life and Liberty: Tampering with Fr. Stan Swamy’s computer and its implications for Bhima Koregaon case (Mumbai Rises to Save Democracy / Dec 2022)
Police Linked to Hacking Campaign to Frame Indian Activists (Wired.com / June 2022)
Leaked Data Shows Surveillance Net in Elgar Parishad Case May Have Crossed a Line (The Wire / July 2021)
They were Accused of plotting to overthrow the Modi government – The evidence was planted, a new report says (Washington Post / Feb 2021)

Compensate Arun Ferreira for not forwarding his letter from jail to mother on Stan Swamy: MSHRC

Compensate Arun Ferreira for not forwarding his letter from jail to mother on Stan Swamy: MSHRC

Compensate Elgaar Parishad accused Arun Ferreira for not forwarding his letter from jail to mother on Stan Swamy: Human rights panel

26/04/2024

The Indian Express / by Express News Service

The Maharashtra State Human Rights Commission has asked the prison department to educate its officers on prison rules to censor inmates’ letters.
The Maharashtra State Human Rights Commission (MSHRC) has directed the home department to pay a compensation of Rs 2 lakh to lawyer and Elgaar Parishad case accused Arun Ferreira for violating his fundamental rights as a prisoner by not forwarding his letter on Father Stan Swamy to his mother.
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Maharashtra officials told to pay activist Rs 2 lakh for blocking letter from jail to mother

25/04/2024

Scroll.in / by Scroll Staff

Arun Ferreira’s letter described his relationship with his co-accused in the Bhima Koregaon case Stan Swamy, who died in custody in 2021.
The Maharashtra State Human Rights Commission has asked the state government and the superintendent of the Taloja jail in Navi Mumbai to pay compensation of Rs 2 lakh to activist Arun Ferreira for failing to send to his mother a letter he had written to her.
Read more


Also read:
Caged birds and prison songs: In chorus, Stan Swamy and the Bhima Koregaon accused kept hope alive (Scroll.in | by Vernon Gonsalves | Jul 2023)
How the system broke Stan Swamy: A cell mate recalls the activist’s last days in prison (Scroll.in | by Arun Ferreira | Aug 2021)