India: New Arrest in Kerala Spurs Broad Protests

[Continuing the ever-intensifying state repression of democratic and dissenting activists, the recent arrests in Kerala State of India have brought new waves of angry protest and demands for the release of political prisoners.  See the following statements from the Committee for the Release of Political Prisoners (CRPP), followed by the statement from the Democratic Student Union (DSU).  —  Frontlines ed.]

Release Thusar and Jaison Cooper!

release1Statement by the Committee for the release of Political Prisoners

31 January 2015

Condemn the arrest of Thusar Nirmal Sarathy, Secretary Kerala Chapter, CRPP and Jaison Cooper, People’s Activist.

Release Thusar Nirmal Sarathy and Jaison Cooper Immediately, Unconditionally

Friday, the 30th January turned out to be a day when the Kerala state machinery and its lawless police brazenly demonstrated yet again that they can’t for once uphold the law of the land while dealing with political dissent of any nature. If post-1947 India have demonstrated that successive governments at the centre or the states used its police and the state machinery for targeting political rivals from different political combinations of the day, it is incriminating to note that all the governments that occupied power throughout the last 68 years have been unequivocal in maintaining the state of permanent emergency for tackling political dissent of the people!

On the 30 January 2015, the Kerala police and the special branch arrested Jaison Cooper in Ernakulam from his work place and Adv. Thushar Nirmal Sarathy from Calicut while he was addressing the press about a protest programme to be held there the following day against the increasing violations of the fundamental rights of the people in the state. At the same time, the police raided the residences of Thushar Sarathy, Advocate Manuel Joseph who is a people’s activist, Ms. Jolly Chirayath, convener of the Women’s Collective, and a artist activist. From the residence of Thushar Sarathy the police took away several case files without even bothering to record the list of the ‘seizures’ that they have done. Even the search was conducted without any warrant being shown to the custodians of the residences.

As increasing instances of impunity have become the hallmark of the police and investigating agencies in the Indian subcontinent with the Kerala police refusing to be different, one can only foresee a motivated police out to incriminate, frame those who are critically looking at the policies of the government. For the police, the fundamental freedoms enshrined in the constitution of the largest democracy seemed to, for every practical purpose, remain in permanent suspension, all in the name of ‘national interest’, ‘national security’ and last but not the least that weapon of mass destruction—‘development’.

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India: Political Prisoner Advocates Declare Unity with Palestinian Prisoners, Hunger Strikers

CRPP Statement on the struggle of Palestinian prisoners lodged in Israeli prisons

COMMITTEE FOR THE RELEASE OF POLITICAL PRISONERS

185/3 FOURTH FLOOR, ZAKIR NAGAR, NEW DELHI—110025
12 June 2014

A large number of Palestinians now incarcerated in the Israeli prisons have begun an indefinite hunger strike since 24 April 2014 against the Zionist policy of “administrative detention” of Palestinians fighting for justice, dignity and a separate independent state for the Palestinian people. A group of 120 Palestinian political prisoners started a hunger strike and were later joined by more inmates and the strike has entered its 46th day today. This policy of administrative detention is but imprisonment without trial or charge that allows Israel to imprison Palestinians for up to six months initially and then extend it for indefinite periods of time which can go to years together.

The conditions inside prisons are abysmal. According to WAFA Palestinian News & Information Agency, in the face of this hunger strike, Israeli Prison Service, in a mad rage for vengeance, has ordered prison guards to treat the inmates brutally. They have been holding prisoners on hunger-strike in solitary confinement and have also confiscated their belongings, except for their clothes, as a means of exerting pressure over them to end their strike.

According to the Press TV, the health conditions of many of the striking prisoners held in solitary confinement are critical. More than 100 prisoners have been sent to hospital for medical care. “The weight of striking prisoners has gone down by an average of 16 kgs”, said Jawad Bolus, a Palestinian lawyer who visited eight of the hospitalized inmates, according to The Jerusalem Post. Continue reading

India: Death Squad kills RDF Vice-President

Condemn Strongly the Ghastly Murder of Ganti Prasadam, the Vice President of RDF by State-Sponsored Vigilante Gangs!

COMMITTEE FOR THE RELEASE OF POLITICAL PRISONERS

185/3, FOURTH FLOOR, ZAKIR NAGAR, NEW DELHI-110025

05/07/2013

Constitute Immediately a Judicial Inquiry into the Killing of Ganti Prasadam by Vigilante Goons!

Ganti Prasadam, the All India Vice-President of Revolutionary Democratic Front (RDF) as well as the Executive Member of the Committee for the Relatives and Friends of Martyrs, succumbed to the brutal and fatal attack on 5 July 2013 on him by unidentified gunmen in Nellore town. He was fatally wounded on his his neck with hunting sickles and later shot at with a pistol on the 4th afternoon. Comrade Ganti Prasadam was at Nellore to attend a public meeting of the Martyrs’ Committee held every year to remember the martyrs of Nellore. He bacame the target of the waiting goons when after the meeting, along with three of his associates of the committee he was on to visit one of the ailing relatives of a martyr at a local hospital.  Ganti Prasadam was operated on after receiving bullet injuries and the doctors were trying in vain to remove the third bullet which was dangerously close to his spinal cord. Comrade Ganti Prasadam this time could not sustain his arduous struggle to keep up his breath.

Given the notorious anti-people track-record of the intelligence agencies in Andhra Pradesh which have resorted to the worst kinds of atrocities on the struggling oppressed people of the region, be it naxalites, adivasis, dalits or Muslims, this murderous operation is reminiscent to the dastardly assassination of people’s political, social and civil rights activists in the past 40 years. Dr. Ramanadham, Purushottam, Jappa Laxmana Reddy, Prabhakar Reddy, Kanakachari, Azam Ali, Belli Lalita are a few examples of dedicated people’s leaders and civil rights activists targetted by the state in Andhra Pradesh in the past. Continue reading

India: Demand release of jailed peoples artist and advocate for political prisoners! No to execution!

COMMITTEE FOR THE RELEASE OF POLITICAL PRISONERS 
185/3, FOURTH FLOOR, ZAKIR NAGAR, NEW DELHI-110025
To
Mr. Arjun Munda,
Chief Minister,
Jharkhand
No to put Jiten Marandi under the draconian preventive detention Jharkhand Crime Control Act 2002! 
Release Jiten Marandi immediately and unconditionally! 
We strongly protest and are concerned about the continuing incarceration of people’s cultural artist Jiten Marandi. Jiten Marandi is also one of the secretaries of the CRPP. Notwithstanding the fact that Jiten Marandi has been acquitted on December 15, 2011 by the High Court of Jharkhand against the death sentence given to him by the sessions court in the notorious Chilkari case.
Despite such heavy odds against him, Jiten Marandi could successfully tide over all machinations of the state to silence his voice. The overwhelming support of the masses of the people also proved beyond doubt that the people of the subcontinent value the struggle for justice. Further he has got bail on all the four cases slapped on him. It should be noted that two of the cases were foisted on him when he was behind bars! But he was about to be released with order of the bail when the authoritarian state of Jharkhand which has scant respect for law has yet again come up with another draconian instrument to stifle the voice of Jiten Marandi.
But we are concerned about the desperate manner in which the vindictive and authoritarian state have thrown all sense of justice and fair play to the winds and evoked the draconian Jharkhand Crime Control Act (2002) on Jiten Marandi. This last minute desperation of the Jharkhand government to evoke a draconian preventive detention act like the Jharkhand Crime Control Act (2002) to prevent the release of Jiten Marandi shows the complete lack of respect on the side of the government for the principles of right to fair trial, right to legal remedies for any citizen who necessarily has been a dissenting voice against the anti-people policies under the rubric of Liberalisation, Privatisation and Globalisation.  Continue reading

India: Human rights activists urged to unite the struggles to free political prisoners

Release political prisoners unconditionally: CRPP

By Mohd. Ismail Khan, TwoCircles.net

Hyderabad, 24 March 2012: ‘Human rights activists should work together in cooperation, not in competition like different sects’, said well-known writer and human rights activist Arundhati Roy. She was speaking at a meeting organized by the Committee for the Release of Political Prisoners (CRPP) A.P. chapter on the occasion of the 80 death anniversary of Shaheed Bhagat Singh.

Two locks opened in 1991 to divide depressed classes

She said, in 1991 two locks were opened in this country, one was the lock of Babri Masjid, and other was of the Indian markets. “The demolition of the Babri Masjid and the opening up of Indian markets were a deliberate attempt to weaken opposition to India becoming an ally of the US,” she said.

Arundhati Roy addressing the CRPP meeting in Hyderbad on 23rd March 2012According to Mrs. Roy those two factors were used by different governments to divide the depressed classes and to isolate them. “Babri Masjid demolition was used to terrorize and demonize Indian Muslim community, whereas 1991 reforms were used against Tribals and to help corporate houses to exploit depressed classes,” she added.

She further said that the US relationship has never benefited any country in the world. She gave the example of turmoil, and civil war kind of situation in Pakistan which according to her is the result of US strategic partnership.

She warned India of same fate if it gets closer to US. “Indo-US relations were a ‘theatrical drama’ enacted to induce India to support the US with a view to isolate Iran on one hand and to help build a cold war situation in China. India had acceded to the US at every stage right from buying nuclear reactors to opening up foreign direct investment. The big investments right now were in the education sector wherein US universities wanted to set up franchises in India. That is why all universities in India were shifting to the semester system of examinations like in the US. It was also not a coincidence that spiritual leader Sri Sri Sri Ravi Shankar insisted that education should be privatized.”

Ending her speech she urged the audience to give up the narrow thinking of political prisoners, and widen its meaning which includes every person who is in jail in any false case, even if the case is so petty like pick pocketing. Continue reading