One Picture Worth 1000 Words

from Deep Dish TV, 08/12/2014

Police confront a protester in St Louis

Police confront protesters in Ferguson, St Louis, after the shooting by police of an unarmed black teenager, Michael Brown.

If the word “pigs” seems too offensive, or too 60s, or too derisive of the porcine species, this image should shatter the restrained, oh so fine and cautious language that now surrounds the militarized robo-cops who are charged to contain and repress communities of people of color throughout the United States. If this image does not make your blood boil, you are most likely deeply infected with racism.

In Ferguson Missouri, a community near St.Louis, a white cop gunned down Michael Brown, an unarmed Black high school graduate about to go to college. “Gunned down” is accurate. It means he pumped numerous bullets in to the boy’s body while his arms were raised over his head. The Police Chief at this writing won’t release the name of the murdering cop, for his “security.” (The town’s police force is 95% white, the town is 70% Black.)

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As many protest the Indian state’s arbitrary malevolence, prosecutor and DU stop eviction of jailed professor’s family

[For many years, the administration of Delhi University (acting upon the repressive urgings of the Indian state against prominent activists) have pursued harassment and eviction-threats and -orders against the disabled Professor GN Saibaba and his family, who have struggled to maintain wheel-chair accessible housing on campus..  Last year, these threats came to a head with actual attempts to evict the professor and his family--which was only prevented by mass mobilizations of students and faculty, defending the housing rights of the family  (see background on all this at http://sanhati.com/articles/6010/).   Now, as outrage over the abduction, arrest, and refusal to provide medical care and appropriate care for this wheelchair-bound disabled imprisoned professor, the state has refused his release on bail, and in the same period have pressed forward on the eviction of his family.    But now, the university has backed off on the eviction, not because they have had a change of heart, but because the state is calculating the political effect that such a malevolent eviction of the family may have, risking the state's pursuit of their fabricated case against Dr. Saibaba.  What next repressive steps the state will take, cannot be foretold, but anything must be expected.  Free Dr.Saibaba!  Stop Hounding and Suppressing Activists!  -- Frontlines ed.]

Suspended DU professor GN Saibaba’s family will not be evicted

Press Trust of India,  Jul 05, 2014

New Delhi: Delhi University (DU) on Saturday assured a court here that family members of its suspended professor G N Saibaba, arrested for his alleged Maoist links, will not be evicted from their residence provided by DU.

“He (DU’s counsel) is assuring orally that he will inform the authorities about the court order (passed by a vacation judge on June 9 and thereby staying proceedings of eviction by the university)…,” District Judge A K Chawla said.

The assurance by DU came while the court was hearing a petition filed by Saibaba’s wife Vasantha, challenging the June 2 order of estate officer in which the professor was asked to vacate the Gwyer Hall premises provided to him by DU. Continue reading

Fascism, Fundamentalism and Patriarchy

[This article was written by Anuradha Gandhy in 2001 on the verge of the reactionary Hindu nationalist Narendra Modi becoming the chief minister of Gujarat, where in the Gujarat riots of 2002 fascist Hindu nationalists murdered thousands of Muslims in what became billed as "The Final Solution."  Modi, now the newly-elected Prime Minister of India, is moving to consolidate even more repressive power on a national level, forge even stronger collaborative relations with imperialism and with Zionism, expand the military and arms-export industries, enforce an exclusive Hindu-language public usage in a country where 60% of the people speak non-Hindu languages, and further intensify patriarchal and caste-driven relations and attacks on adivasi peoples.  The following article, pathbreaking when it was written, provides significant analysis and background on relations which have only become more oppressive. -- Frontlines ed.]

Anuradha Gandhy– [from Wikipedia: "Anuradha Ghandy (1954 - April 12, 2008) was an Indian communist, writer, and revolutionary leader. She was a member of the banned Communist Party of India-Maoist. She was mostly involved in propaganda, and in CPI(Maoist)'s insurgency into urban areas. Among the policy papers drafted by the Marxist movement, Anuradha had contributed significantly to the ones on castes and 'Feminism and Marxism'. She made the guerillas realise the potential of worker cooperatives in areas like agricultural production, in Dhandakaranya. She was also critical on shifting patriarchal ideas that were then dominant in the party."  --  Frontlines ed.]

 

Exactly one year after the carnage in Gujarat began; the country is still reeling from the horror of the events. Narendra Modi’s expected victory in the assembly elections has further strengthened the position of the Hindutva fascist forces not only in Gujarat but also in the country as a whole. Reviewing the strategy of Hindutva forces and the lessons from Gujarat become even more relevant now. Here we are concerned with the impact of the Hindutva fascist forces on women and on the women’s movement.

The agenda of the Hindu fascist forces is political. Their strategy is the maximum political mobilisation of the Hindu masses and their aim is the establishment of a Hindu Rashtra. It will be noticed that the present phase of Hindu fascist growth can trace its growth with the neo-liberal economic policies of the early 1980s. And the aggressive policies of economic reforms and globalisation of the 1990s is accompanied with the aggressive policies of Hindutva. The reasons for this is not far to seek: the policies of economic reform have led to the extreme impoverisation of, not only a large section of the masses, but even of sizable sections of the middle classes; so there was urgent need to divert peoples’ attention from their mass destitution through the whipping up a frenzy against Muslims and other minorities. Besides, mass anger against the blatant capitulation to the imperialists, particularly the US, is sought to be diverted through fake nationalism, like slogans of cultural nationalism and Hindu Rashtra.

The extreme and continued polarisation of Hindu society in Gujarat along religious lines, the sense of brazen confidence with which the attacking, looting and killing was carried out and the active participation of a section of the women from the upper castes, shows that the Hindu fascist forces have been successful in Gujarat in taking their agenda forward. They have penetrated and succeeded in converting a section of the Hindu masses to their ideology and imbue them with the goal of Hindu Rashtra. What horror this portends for the oppressed sections — the lower castes, women, especially women of minority communities and the poor —does not need mention.

Growing Fundamentalism Worldwide — What it means for Women

The rise of Hindu fascist forces is part of the world-wide rise of fundamentalism and fascism.. Imperialism faced with its worst ever crisis since the inter-war years is encouraging and promoting fundamentalist forces and fascist organisations and propaganda. “Imperialism strives for reaction everywhere” Lenin. As Hawley has argued, “fundamentalist perspectives on gender cast a uniquely revealing light on the nature of fundamentalism as a whole.” As it is, all religions have been patriarchal in the moral code they sanction and the social arrangements they uphold. And one of the central points of fundamentalist propaganda is a conservative ideology of gender — all fundamentalist forces, be they of the Christian denominations in the US, or Hindu, or the New Religions in Japan or Islamic forces — they proclaim the specific agenda of restoring the centrality of the family and home in the life of women and patriarchal control over her sexuality. Hence ideologues of the New Right even in the US are claiming that there is a moral crisis in American society and this is because of the fact that women are working outside the home. Though they have mobilised actively around opposition to abortion rights for women, they begin by arguing that welfare state expenditures have raised taxes and added to inflation, pulling the married woman into the labour force and thereby destroying the fabric of the patriarchal family and hence the moral order of society. According to Jerry Falwell of the Moral majority, “ children (in the US) should have the right to the love of the mother and a father who understand their different roles and fulfil their different responsibilities…to live in an economic system that makes it possible for husbands to support their wives as full time mothers in the home and enable the families to survive on one income instead of two.” Continue reading

“Resist the McCarthy-ian tactics of branding and false framing of intellectuals, students and democratic rights activists!”

Statement by the Democratic Student Union, Delhi — June 3, 2014
DSU: “Condemn the abduction and arrest of Dr. G.N. Saibaba by the notorious Maharasthra Police!”

“In a time of universal deceit – telling the truth is a revolutionary act” George Orwell

 It is precisely for this ‘crime’ of speaking the truth in the face of the lies and deceit that seek to hide the untold injustice and oppression perpetuated by the Indian state, that Dr. GN Saibaba has been arrested. Dr. GN Saibaba, a faculty member in DU and a widely known political activist, was clandestinely abducted on 9th May by plain-clothed policemen of the Maharashtra police just steps away from his residence as he was on his way back from examination duty. Saibaba, who suffers from 90% disability and is wheelchair bound, was blindfolded and pushed into a vehicle that swiftly took him to the airport from whence he was flown to Nagpur. The surreptitious manner in which a public figure like him was literally abducted by the police itself testifies that they were wary of the fact that they do not have any substantive evidence to back their hoax of “nabbing” him for alleged “Maoist links”. It has been obvious for quite a while now that the Indian state has been desperate to brand him and frame him under certain cooked up charges. The sole purpose being, to gag a voice of dissent that dares to speak the truth despite repeated threats and intimidations.

A large number of activists, intellectuals, students and teachers turned up in front of Maharasthra Bhawan on 10th May to protest against the dastardly abduction and arrest of Dr. GN Saibaba

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UK: Human Rights Activists and Lawyers Protest Political Arrest of GN Saibaba in India

[The following letter from British human rights activists and lawyers is an important internationalist act in solidarity with political prisoners in India, and particularly Professor GN Saibaba.  And it is doubly important for coming from the UK, where the repressive system of colonial laws in India was created, and continues under the purportedly "independent" and "democratic" regime in India today.  In 2012, the Committee for Release of Political Prisoners (CRPP) in India wrote, "...the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA) (1967) .... was copied from the Armed Forces Special Powers Ordinance brought by the British in 1942. Today the same law has been revamped with more teeth and implemented. Since the 1950s till date every draconian law that received the gravest wrath of the masses of the people was then rehashed into another law with yet stringent clauses. It won’t be an exaggeration to say that the present UAPA is in a way a clever rehashing of the old MISA, NSA, TADA, POTA etc. rolled into one made more stringent with the worst kind of clauses to stifle all forms of dissent." -- Frontlines ed.]

June 20, 2014
Letter to the Chief Justice : Campaign Against Criminalising Communities (CAMPACC)
http://www.campacc.org.uk

Your Honour,
We the undersigned would like to express our concern over the manner in which the government is increasingly resorting to the indiscriminate use of custody. In particular, the draconian Unlawful Activities Prevention Act 2008 (UAPA) is being abused indiscriminately to harass, intimidate and dissenting voices. This is part of the escalating effort to impede free speech and even thought, contrary to the Constitution of India as well as International principles of Human Rights. Such actions become pernicious in the context of the wide-ranging powers and impunity that have been available to the police and paramilitary forces under this Act. This is illustrated by the fact that the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has reportedly issued instructions that persons and organizations who raise issues of human rights violations in Maoist areas must be targeted and arrested.
The recent abduction of Dr. G. N. Saibaba was particularly shocking. Dr. G N Saibaba, Asst. Professor with the Department of English, Ram Lal Anand College, Delhi University, was arrested by the Maharashtra Police on 9 May 2014 for his alleged links with Naxal leaders. He has been an active member of the Delhi University community, a very popular and respected teacher, and an important voice on democratic norms within and outside the university. He has been a vocal and important critic of the Indian state’s policies with regard to its paramilitary action in Central and Eastern tribal areas, commonly known as Operation Green Hunt. Along with other intellectuals, he has drawn attention to the blatant human rights violations of the Adivasi peoples of these regions. In particular, he has pointed out the enormous financial stakes in claiming the region for private industrial and commercial development at several national and international forums. Along with other intellectuals, he has criticized such models of “development” and their usefulness for the local populace in any participatory democracy. His sustained critique has earned him the ire of the powers that be. For some time now, they have been looking for a way to silence this very significant voice.
Dr. Saibaba is wheelchair bound, suffers from 90% disability and post-polio residual paralysis of both lower limbs. He poses no flight risk whatsoever. He is also a heart patient with blood pressure issues. Furthermore, he suffers from chronic and intense back pain as a result of the disability and being wheelchair bound. He has always cooperated fully with the investigation and did not need to be arrested. The National Human Rights Commission has already issued notice to the Maharashtra and Delhi police forces for violation of Dr. Saibaba’s rights in the course of the earlier investigation. Continue reading

Indian State Judicial System Has a Long History of Fabricated Cases and Failed Prosecutions of Political Prisoners

Maharashtra’s Naxal barrack lacks conviction

PAVAN DAHAT, The Hindu, June 18, 2014

For lack of evidence, few among the 150 persons held for Maoist links in the last 7 years have been prosecuted

Over the past seven years, as many as 150 persons have been arrested by Maharashtra over alleged Maoist links but have languished in custody for lack of legal prosecution, many subsequently even being acquitted.

In 2008, the total strength of the “Naxal barrack” in Nagpur Central Jail, where the “Maoist prisoners” are held, was 168. Today, however, “only 37 Naxal prisoners are left in the Naxal barrack”, according to advocate Surendra Gadling, who has been representing those accused of having Maoist links.

Most of these people have been charged with involvement in “Maoist violence” in the State’s Gadchiroli-Gondia area and acting as “the urban front” for the Maoists.

“Police slapped multiple cases on all these people, most of whom were activists fighting for Tribal or Dalit rights or against displacement. At times, the accused faced 60 to 70 cases under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act [UAPA] or for waging war against the state and sedition charges,” says Mr. Gadling. Continue reading