Why is India committing human rights violations? #AskIndiaWhy

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DEMAND THE UNITED NATIONS HAVE ITS MEMBER NATION, INDIA, AFFIRM THAT FREEDOM TO DISSENT IS A KEY PILLAR OF DEMOCRACY

India is currently cracking down on dissent against unconstitutional new farm bills that have seen a historic mass rejection by farmer unions in india. Farmers stand against these bills as they will decimate small scale farming, further the destruction of the environment, all for the benefit and enrichment of oligarchs and their corporations..

India claims to be the biggest Democracy in the world, with over a billion voters. However the country routinely fails to uphold one of the key pillars of democracy - freedom to dissent. In January 2020 citizens across the country were peacefully protesting against laws (CAA - Citizenship Amendment Act) which would arbitrarily revoke the citizenship of countless Muslims in India. In retaliation nationalist mobs, accompanied by police, violently attacked protestors. During what went on to be called ‘The Delhi Pogrom’ 43 Muslims were murdered, while Muslim businesses and whole neighbourhoods were burnt down. This is how India reacts to the peaceful dissent of its citizens.

Outside of this most recent example there is also a long history of India crushing dissent — specifically within the Sikh community. In recent Sikh memory the ‘Decade of Disappearances' of 1984 – 1994, where india responded to the Sikh liberation stuggle with a campaign of mass rapes, torture, and genocide, still has a reverberating impact across the Sikh world till this day. Now that thousands of Sikh and Punjabi farmers are gearing up to have a massive protest on Jan. 26th (India’s Republic Day) it’s more important than ever that India realign with the democratic principles espoused by india and the member states of the United Nations.

In 2003, the so called riots in the state of Gujarat were instigated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who was Chief Minister of the state at the time. Many thousands of Muslims lost their lives and Modi faced travel bans to most of the democratic world.

It is imperative that India commits to upholding values of democracy and that the world keep its eyes on India while it continues to be ground zero for the largest labour movement the world has ever seen.

With a track record like India’s it‘s very likely that protestors may be met with state violence or mass incarceration. We are asking the UN to have its member nation, India, affirm that freedom to dissent is a key pillar of its democracy. As the farmers’ protest in Delhi carries on, the only thing preventing another slaughter at the hands of police and military may be the assurances that a global community is watching carefully what happens — now, and any time the ruling government is faced with dissent.

We call on the United Nations to have its member nation, India, affirm that freedom to dissent is a key pillar of democracy.

#AskIndiaWhy