Appeal for Fr. Stan Swamy
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Drop the false charges against Fr Stan Swamy immediately!
We stand together strongly to condemn the false allegations and defamatory charges against Fr Stan Swamy by the Pune police, under the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act, 1967 (UAPA). These charges frame him in the Bhima Koregaon case, call him an “urban naxalite”, and accuse him of plotting the assassination of the Prime Minister. They are patently false and defamatory.
The police forces of the State of Maharashtra led a witch hunt of human rights activists, poets, teachers, lawyers and trade union leaders on 28 August 2018 across several locations in the country. They have viciously attacked those who fight for the rights of the poor, dalits, women and indigenous peoples (adivasis). The homes of these suspects have been raided, their electronic devices seized, and serious cases filed. Some are already in prison, without any charges being filed, others face arrest any time.
Stan Swamy writes:
- I am also one of the ‘suspects’. My home was also raided on 28th August 2018, without warrant, and over my strenuous objections, and even after more than four months the Pune police have not filed any charges.
- When I appealed to the Bombay HC [No.4741 of 2018] to quash the FIR against me, my petition was rejected. Instead the court authorized the Pune police to continue its investigation on me, without prescribing any time frame, to see if I have committed any offence under UAPA and if needed, to take strong legal action. The court seems to go by the police’s version with scant regard to what the petitioners are saying.
This is an appeal to all democratic minded individuals/groups/ organizations/ movements/ordinary citizens genuinely concerned about the steadily worsening human rights situation in our country to raise their voices against it.
The indifference and apathy of the Supreme Court of India is seen towards the violation of basic human rights of those arrested and who are being targeted by the police in the Bhima Koregaon case. Meanwhile the real perpetrators of violence, Sambhaji Bhide and Milind Ekbote roam free, for the police have stopped pursuing their cases. If anything, this exposes the nexus of the ruling party and the police.
We come together to stand in solidarity with Fr Stan Swamy and all those arrested and held in prison against whom the police have concocted charges under draconian laws such as UAPA.
- That the malicious cases against Fr Stan Swamy and all those who have been falsely incarcerated in the Bhima Koregaon riot (Bharadwaj, Ferreira, Gohain, , Gonsalves, Navlakha Teltumbde) be immediately withdrawn.
- That the police issue an unconditional apology for the trial by media by releasing fabricated evidence in the public domain.
- That the police pursue the FIR No. 01/2018 lodged at the Pimpri Police Station, Pune in which Sambhaji Bhide and Milind Ekbote, the prime accused in the Bhima Koregaon violence have been named, and accordingly an application for cancelling bail to Milind Ekbote be made immediately.
- The UAPA, the National Security Act, 1980 and the Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act (MCOCA), 1999 that violate basic human rights of citizens, be repealed.
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