Each citizen, as Havel once said about totalitarianism, must become iconic of protest from body language to symbolism. When indifference and prejudice becomes a monstrosity of legal indifference, civil society must reinvent democracy as a new politics of caring, says Shiv Visvanathan. Read more
You may lately have come across stories of activists and journalists being charged under the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act, or UAPA. The UAPA is an anti-terrorism law which has been used against activists associated with the Bhima-Koregaon movement, the citizenship law protesters, and even a journalist on his way to cover the Hathras rape and murder…
Meghnad S takes you through the history of the UAPA, its evolution from an anti-secession legislation to being an anti-terrorism law, and how it has been misused by successive governments. Watch video
Swiss parliamentarians and trade unionists formed a solidarity committee for BK16
Parliamentarians and trade unionists establish solidarity committee for arrested human rights activists, lawyers, intellectuals and cultural workers in India
Press Release Nov 30, 2020
Swiss parliamentarians and trade unionists have formed a solidarity committee for political prisoners in India. With this they protest against the criminalization of human rights activists and government critics in India and demand their release. They also call on the Indian government to ensure that they are released, that irregularities in the proceedings against the arrested persons are investigated and that rights of the prisoners are fully guaranteed. The committee was initiated by the Solidarity organization SOLIFONDS, which has been in contact with the well-known arrested lawyer and trade unionist Sudha Bharadwaj for years. …
#India: During the #16DaysOfActivism, we remember detained human rights lawyer Sudha Bharadwaj. We urge authorities to secure her immediate release in the absence of clear evidence of criminal conduct. @NIA_India #FreeSudha #FreeBhimaKoregaon #16days #OrangeTheWorld
The @chr_aba report found that Ms. Bharadwaj has been subject to numerous fair trial violations, including prejudicial public statements by the police and lack of independent public witnesses. @UN_SPExperts @UNIndepJudges
A musical event this weekend will highlight the plight of political activists locked behind bars
Justice delayed is justice denied. That’s the maxim that some people have brought up in connection to political activists who have been imprisoned without their bail pleas being heard, some for years on end. The country’s criminal justice system is in the spotlight at a time when people are voicing their concern about the pending cases of activists Varavara Rao, Sudha Bharadwaj, Shoma Sen and hundreds of others like them who have been spending their nights in jail cells. Read more
India’s Era Of Unequal Liberties / Protect our Republic, my lords
On 11 November 2020, the Supreme Court granted bail to television show-host Arnab Goswami, who had been in judicial custody for seven days on an abetment to suicide charge related to a 2018 case. The merits aside, the manner in which the judicial machinery functioned to protect Goswami’s liberty was extraordinary… However, when the Supreme Court’s own approach to cases concerning personal liberty is tested on the touchstone of these observations, the reality could not be more of a contrast…
Sudha Bharadwaj: Imprisoned For 811 Days Read more
Protect our Republic, my lords
The Hindu / by Sriram Panchu
The judiciary’s quick intervention in the Arnab Goswami case turns the spotlight on other serious cases that languish.
The facts are brief. Mr. Arnab Goswami of Republic TV, a media group perceived to be supportive of the ruling party, was arrested by the Mumbai Police on November 4, 2020 on a charge of abetting the suicide of Anvay Naik … The High Court heard his case for five hours on a holiday, and said exactly this on November 9…
There is however the disturbing contrast between the breakneck speed of the Supreme Court in this case with other cases which involve large scale and serious violations of fundamental freedoms. Read more
Five cases on personal liberty decided by Justice DY Chandrachud
Bar & Bench / by Murali Krishnan
Supreme Court Bench headed by JusticeDY Chandrachud, on November 11 granted bail to Republic TV Editor-in-Chief, Arnab Goswami in an abetment to suicide case against him…
Below are a few cases in which Justice Chandrachud was confronted with issue of personal liberty/ bail.
Bhima -Koregaon arrests Read more
What About Personal Liberty Of Sudha Bharadwaj, Anand Teltumbde, VV Rao & Stan Swamy?
SC Protects Arnab’s Personal Liberty, Why Not Sudha Bharadwaj’s?
Kashimir Pen / by Web Desk
Leading human rights and constitutional lawyer Karuna Nundy applauded the Supreme Court for acting out its self-professed role as ‘sentinel on the qui vive’ and protecting personal liberty when ordering Arnab Goswami’s release on interim bail – but had some tough questions about the consistency of the court’s approach.
She noted that even though the Republic editor-in-chief had not only damaged people’s reputations by calling them terrorists and anti-nationals, and actually influenced the taking of state action against them – from Umar Khalid to the Bhima Koregaon accused – it was still a good thing that his case was heard on a priority basis by the apex court. Read more
Video: SC Protects Arnab’s Personal Liberty, But What About Sudha Bharadwaj’s?
en | 7:32min | 2020
The Quint / by The Quint
Supreme Court advocate Karuna Nundy explains why there are concerns over the consistency with which the apex court will apply its order granting Arnab Goswami interim bail, with Sudha Bharadwaj’s case a prime example. Watch video
Video: What About Liberty Of Anand Teltumbde, Varavara Rao, Stan Swamy, Asks Kapil Sibal
en | 11:23min | 2020
NDTV / by NDTV
The Supreme Court’s order on Wednesday in the Arnab Goswami case has major implications beyond just this one instance. Justice Chandrachud observed, “Forget Arnab Goswami for a moment, we are a Constitutional court…. If we as a Constitutional Court do not lay down law and protect liberty, then who will?” He went on to add, “If we don’t interfere in this case today, we will walk on path of destruction. You may differ in ideology but Constitutional courts will have to protect such freedoms…” The remarks come at a time when thousands languish in jails in want of bail. These include the old and the infirm, like 81-year-old Varavara Rao accused in the Bhima-Koregaon case and Father Stan Swamy who suffers from Parkinson’s.
After the Supreme Court’s observations that ‘constitutional courts have to protect freedoms’, will this set a precedent in other pending cases as well? We speak to senior advocate and Congress MP Kapil Sibal who was in Supreme Court in connection with this case. Watch video
A Turkish folktale, lately popular worldwide, relates that there was once—upon a time—a copse of trees that mistook an axe for a friend. “Look, it’s got a wooden handle!” cheered the trees. “The axe is one of us!” Pretty soon, those became famous last words. Variants of the plot are found in Hebrew and Kannada, Urdu and Greek, for when a folktale goes global we often discover it was global all along.
In The Leaflet (October 25), Annie Domini asks how we can “accurately recapture the evil of a State that finds solidarity to be a crime”. Read more
Institute of Postcolonial Studies / by Yug Mohit Chaudhry
While purporting to investigate the Hindutva-fuelled riots of 1st January 2018 following the Elgaar Parishad commemoration of the Battle of Bhima Koregaon, an iconic event in Dalit historiography, the state has imprisoned some highly respected intellectuals, scholars and social activists…
Many of these sixteen are role models and heroes of our times: they have sacrificed themselves for the weak and the poor, deepened democracy, and given dignity and meaning to those surviving on the margins of existence ignored by successive governments. If at all they erred, it was in excess of love for those they served. Read more