Artists in India Protest “Growing Intolerance” and “ideological Viciousness”

Tribune India,  November 6 2015

24 filmmakers, Arundhati Roy return their awards

24 filmmakers, Arundhati Roy return their awards

Arundhati Roy

Mumbai, November 5

Another 24 filmmakers, including Kundan Shah of “Jaane Bhi Do Yaaro” fame and Saeed Mirza who directed “Nukkad”, besides writer Arundhati Roy today returned their national awards over “growing intolerance”, voicing fears that the country’s robust democracy might be “coming apart” in the current atmosphere.

With this, at least 75 members of the intelligentsia have either returned national or literary awards, in an escalation of protests by writers, historians, filmmakers and scientists even as writer Nayantara Sahgal reiterated that “secularism was under threat” like never before. Sahgal was among the first to return the honours when she gave back the Sahitya Akademi award in October. Continue reading

Palestinians voice resistance, PA suppresses dissent

Dozens of journalists, activists arrested as PA cracks down on dissent

Jerusalem, 1 May 2012

Palestinian journalists in Gaza City protest the arrest of West Bank journalist Yousef al-Shayab, 4 April 2012. (Mohammed Asad / APA images)

JERUSALEM (IPS) – The Palestinian Authority’s arrest of journalists and activists critical of its policies are threatening freedom of expression in the West Bank, according to local human rights groups.

“We monitored a new trend of arresting people and journalists and the oppression of freedom of expression,” Shawan Jabarin, director of the Palestinian human rights group Al-Haq, said. “There are many people I’m sure that are afraid and will count to ten before they say anything. Maybe they’ll push people to speak underground instead of expressing their opinions freely.” Continue reading