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Raise your voice against arrest of eminent human rights activist Teesta Setalvad: AFDR Punjab

Sabrangindia 26 Jul 2022

Teesta Setalvad

Gujrat ATS raided the Mumbai house of eminent  human rights activist Teesta Setalvad and arrested her after implicating in a falsely made up case. Association for Democratic Rights (AFDR) Punjab strongly condemns this unjustified and unfair arrest and wants her immediate release. AFDR Punjab also urges all democratic people to raise their voice against this blantant attack on an individual's freedom. Releasing a press note, Professor Jagmohan Singh President and Pritpal Singh Bathinda General Secretary  of AFDR Punjab said that to muzzle every voice of dissent, This central  Govt has adopted repressive approach. For furtherence of this fascist agenda, Govt has arrested Teesta Setalvad and One retired DGP of Gujrat police Mr R.B.Kumar. For these arrests, June 24 judgement of Supreme has been used as an excuse. In an  appeal filed in Supreme court  by Zakia Jaffri against Gujrat High court judgement , Teesta was co-petitioner. Rejecting the appeal, the Supreme court made some observations that tentamount to reversing the justice system upside down .

What this appeal was all about may be known in words of Teesta herself . She wrote in “ When her criminal complaint into the Gujarat killings of 2002 was filed on June 8, 2006 – accompanied by 2,000 pages of evidence, provided by serving police officers and administrators  – we were aware of the uphill nature of the ask. What we did not anticipate, however, was the resistance, across persuasions, to probing the critical issues raised fairly and transparently.

In this battle for acknowledgment, justice and accountability behind the well-orchestrated, state directed and executed crimes of 2002 in Gujarat, the system today stands subverted by the very process put in place to assess and correct the wrongs.

Sixteen years after an estimated 300 incidents racked Gujarat, described by the Concerned Citizens Tribunal, Crimes Against Humanity, as an “organised crime perpetuated by the state’s chief minister and his government” and a dozen years after the criminal complaint was filed, Zakia Jafri’s case comes up for hearing before the Supreme Court on November 19. Once again, we will seek to get back to the very basis of the charges raised in the original complaint.

The reason for this travesty is the betrayal of the mandate granted to the Supreme Court-appointed Special Investigation Team (SIT) by the officers who manned it. A former CBI director, now appointed ambassador to Cyprus by the regime whose powerful men he was investigating, and his hand-picked men (assisted over time by officers from the Gujarat cadre who have since been promoted) worked to obfuscate and nullify the original charges of criminal conspiracy, abetment, murder, hate speech, destruction of records and subversion of statutory authorities. These charges had first been outlined in the June 2006 complaint and thereafter substantiated in the protest petition filed by Zakia Jafri before the magistrate’s court on April 15, 2013.” 

Instead the court has treated the complainant as criminals . The reversal of standard justice system. Forgetting that the same the Supreme Court  did felt  compelled in 2004  to compare the state authorities of Gujarat with Nero? While discussing the Best Bakery case, it had said: “The modern day Neroes were looking elsewhere when Best Bakery and innocent children were burning, and were probably deliberating how the perpetrators of the crime can be protected.” 

Forgetting the above Supreme court verdict the  , home minister Amit Shaw  made scathing statements  against Teesta Setalvad. He said that NGO being run by this activist Teesta, provided baseless information about Gujrat riots and she is instigating Zakia Jaffri. He was giving sufficiently clear hints that from now onwards, those activists who have been helping the victims of Gujrat 2002 pogrom would be silenced by  putting them  behind bars for long periods. People standing with members of minority community against state sponsored riots would be dealt with iron hand.

The courts in this case has not discharged their duties as per legal and constitutional provisions. They failed miserably in providing justice to the families of victims and are shirking their accountability. People are feeling desperate and rapidly loosing the little faith they were reposing in our judicial system.

In this case IPS officer Sanjiv Bhatt has already been put behind bar because he  has filed an affidavit in Supreme court against Modi  regime for his role in riots.  Ex-DGP of Gujrat police,R.B Kumar was accused of obstructing the policemen from discharging their duties during riots of 2002.  

A  Retired DGP has  reported that ministers were instructing police not to do their duty.  Fearless journalist Rana Ayub has very vividly brought out many details of this pogrom in his monumental book 'Gujrat Files'.

Despite all these evidences and facts, SIT gave clean chit to all the 64 accused persons. Zakia Jaffri, wife of slain ex congress M.P Eshan Jaffri, challeged this in  Supreme court. Teesta and her legal team supported Zakia Jaffri steadfastly  through out  her entire legal fight. That is why she has been made special target and arrested. It is nothing but confirmation of reversal of legal justice system in which complainants are being treated as criminal , it is the same process as is  being  followed to bulldoze  down without following any laid down legal procedures. The victims of Hindutavi attacks are being treated as  accused and attackers are allowed to enjoy freedom so system patronage  . The people and democratic activists who dare to stand against this injustice  are being attacked , arrested and put behind bars. AFDR Punjab gives a call to all the justice lovers, intellectuals, democratic people to rise and unite against this dictatorial and fascist attacks on our democratic rights.

Raise your voice against arrest of eminent human rights activist Teesta Setalvad: AFDR Punjab

Teesta Setalvad

Gujrat ATS raided the Mumbai house of eminent  human rights activist Teesta Setalvad and arrested her after implicating in a falsely made up case. Association for Democratic Rights (AFDR) Punjab strongly condemns this unjustified and unfair arrest and wants her immediate release. AFDR Punjab also urges all democratic people to raise their voice against this blantant attack on an individual's freedom. Releasing a press note, Professor Jagmohan Singh President and Pritpal Singh Bathinda General Secretary  of AFDR Punjab said that to muzzle every voice of dissent, This central  Govt has adopted repressive approach. For furtherence of this fascist agenda, Govt has arrested Teesta Setalvad and One retired DGP of Gujrat police Mr R.B.Kumar. For these arrests, June 24 judgement of Supreme has been used as an excuse. In an  appeal filed in Supreme court  by Zakia Jaffri against Gujrat High court judgement , Teesta was co-petitioner. Rejecting the appeal, the Supreme court made some observations that tentamount to reversing the justice system upside down .

What this appeal was all about may be known in words of Teesta herself . She wrote in “ When her criminal complaint into the Gujarat killings of 2002 was filed on June 8, 2006 – accompanied by 2,000 pages of evidence, provided by serving police officers and administrators  – we were aware of the uphill nature of the ask. What we did not anticipate, however, was the resistance, across persuasions, to probing the critical issues raised fairly and transparently.

In this battle for acknowledgment, justice and accountability behind the well-orchestrated, state directed and executed crimes of 2002 in Gujarat, the system today stands subverted by the very process put in place to assess and correct the wrongs.

Sixteen years after an estimated 300 incidents racked Gujarat, described by the Concerned Citizens Tribunal, Crimes Against Humanity, as an “organised crime perpetuated by the state’s chief minister and his government” and a dozen years after the criminal complaint was filed, Zakia Jafri’s case comes up for hearing before the Supreme Court on November 19. Once again, we will seek to get back to the very basis of the charges raised in the original complaint.

The reason for this travesty is the betrayal of the mandate granted to the Supreme Court-appointed Special Investigation Team (SIT) by the officers who manned it. A former CBI director, now appointed ambassador to Cyprus by the regime whose powerful men he was investigating, and his hand-picked men (assisted over time by officers from the Gujarat cadre who have since been promoted) worked to obfuscate and nullify the original charges of criminal conspiracy, abetment, murder, hate speech, destruction of records and subversion of statutory authorities. These charges had first been outlined in the June 2006 complaint and thereafter substantiated in the protest petition filed by Zakia Jafri before the magistrate’s court on April 15, 2013.” 

Instead the court has treated the complainant as criminals . The reversal of standard justice system. Forgetting that the same the Supreme Court  did felt  compelled in 2004  to compare the state authorities of Gujarat with Nero? While discussing the Best Bakery case, it had said: “The modern day Neroes were looking elsewhere when Best Bakery and innocent children were burning, and were probably deliberating how the perpetrators of the crime can be protected.” 

Forgetting the above Supreme court verdict the  , home minister Amit Shaw  made scathing statements  against Teesta Setalvad. He said that NGO being run by this activist Teesta, provided baseless information about Gujrat riots and she is instigating Zakia Jaffri. He was giving sufficiently clear hints that from now onwards, those activists who have been helping the victims of Gujrat 2002 pogrom would be silenced by  putting them  behind bars for long periods. People standing with members of minority community against state sponsored riots would be dealt with iron hand.

The courts in this case has not discharged their duties as per legal and constitutional provisions. They failed miserably in providing justice to the families of victims and are shirking their accountability. People are feeling desperate and rapidly loosing the little faith they were reposing in our judicial system.

In this case IPS officer Sanjiv Bhatt has already been put behind bar because he  has filed an affidavit in Supreme court against Modi  regime for his role in riots.  Ex-DGP of Gujrat police,R.B Kumar was accused of obstructing the policemen from discharging their duties during riots of 2002.  

A  Retired DGP has  reported that ministers were instructing police not to do their duty.  Fearless journalist Rana Ayub has very vividly brought out many details of this pogrom in his monumental book 'Gujrat Files'.

Despite all these evidences and facts, SIT gave clean chit to all the 64 accused persons. Zakia Jaffri, wife of slain ex congress M.P Eshan Jaffri, challeged this in  Supreme court. Teesta and her legal team supported Zakia Jaffri steadfastly  through out  her entire legal fight. That is why she has been made special target and arrested. It is nothing but confirmation of reversal of legal justice system in which complainants are being treated as criminal , it is the same process as is  being  followed to bulldoze  down without following any laid down legal procedures. The victims of Hindutavi attacks are being treated as  accused and attackers are allowed to enjoy freedom so system patronage  . The people and democratic activists who dare to stand against this injustice  are being attacked , arrested and put behind bars. AFDR Punjab gives a call to all the justice lovers, intellectuals, democratic people to rise and unite against this dictatorial and fascist attacks on our democratic rights.

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