CRPP statement on illegal detention of K. Murali and C.P. Ismail

May 14, 2015

COMMITTEE FOR THE RELEASE OF POLITICAL PRISONERS

As confirmed by the newspapers and further affirmed by civil rights activists, Maoist intellectual and writer Mr. K. Murali and another activist Mr. CP Ismail are shown arrested by the Maharashtra ATS in Pune allegedly from a housing colony. But contrary to the news paper reports, civil libertarians confirm that Mr. K Murali was undergoing treatment in one of the hospitals in Pune and was detained from there. Whatever one could decipher from the little exchange that he had with the media, it is clear that Mr. K Murali, a senior citizen (62) was arrested while he was undergoing treatment. CP Ismail is 29 years old. The date of the arrest is still not clear though it is reported that the ATS arrested him on Friday and then produced him before the court to be remanded in police custody for the next 7 days. It is a matter of grave concern that Mr. Murali who is a heart patient and had undergone a heart surgery before is not being allowed to be treated. Rather the court has left him in police custody where there is every possibility that his health can further deteriorate.

In the mean time, Murali and Ismail have so far not been allowed to reach out to their lawyers. Like every other political prisoner normally slapped with the draconian UAPA, Mr. Murali and Mr. Ismail will be no exception to the lawful lawlessness of this worst ever legislation which proves the burden of proof on the accused while leaving ample space for the police to indulging every kind of impunity. In such a scenario it is highly unlikely that the police will let him to undertake his medical treatment. We demand that Mr. Murali be allowed to continue with his medical treatment for which he had got admitted in the hospital.

As a Maoist intellectual K. Murali is the author of many books and articles on the politico-economic and historic trajectories that contributed to the constitution of the social formation that is Kerala. His most discussed work is Land, Caste and Bondage (Bhoomi, Jati, Bandhanam) in Malayalam. He was the editor of ‘A World to Win’ and ‘Massline’ two theoretical and political magazines that analyzed the local and international scenario from a Maoist perspective.

We at the CRPP demand that the right to silence and right to a lawyer of their choice be met with and their fundamental right to safeguard them from being tortured be ensured. We further demand unequivocally that the place for such social and political thinkers who through their keen observations and interventions have enriched and expanded the horizon of the debates on issues that are central to the present and future of the vast sections of the people in Kerala and the subcontinent cannot be in the dungeons. They should be allowed to express their views and opinions freely, not only as a fundamental right of their freedom of expression, but also for the deepening of the democracy that we claim ourselves to be. Release K. Murali and CP Ismail immediately and unconditionally! Repeal the draconian UAPA and all other anti-people laws!

In Solidarity,

SAR Geelani
President

Amit Bhattacharyya
Secretary General

Jagmohan Singh
Vice President

Sukhendu Bhattacharjee
Vice President

PA Sebastian
Vice President

MN Ravunni
Vice President

N. Venuh
Vice President

Rona Wilson
Secretary, Public Relatons

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Statement from activists and intellectuals

We the undersigned have learned that Muraleedharan K, a political activist for the last four decades and a distinguished scholar of political economy and dalit studies and the author of ‘Land, caste and servitude’, the path-breaking analysis of agrarian relations in Kerala, has been arrested by a team of Anti-terrorist squad of the Maharashtra Police from Morya Hospital in Talegaon Dabhade near Pune on May 9, 2015.

We are distressed to learn that the ATS has chosen to arrest Muraleedharan popularly known as Ajit while undergoing treatment in a hospital along with C.P. Ismail, a friend helping him as a bystander in the hospital. Bhanupratp Barge, the senior inspector and in-charge of ATS in Pune, himself was quoted as saying that the two persons were arrested from the hospital under the guidance of ATS Chief Vivek Phansalkar. Ajit and Ismail were produced in the court of additional sessions judge SV Mane on May 10, 2015 and the judge had sent the two in the custody of the ATS for the next seven days after a hearing held in in-camera. We understand that Ajit and Ismail were not given any access to a legal counsel to represent them when they were presented in the court. The only reason given by the ATS for the arrest is that Ajit and Ismail “belong to the banned Communist Party of India (Maoist)”.

We feel that the action of the ATS is totally unjustified as denying medical assistance to a sick person is totally inhuman and against the very principle of natural justice and violation of the right to life guaranteed under the constitution. Considering that Ajith was ailing and was hospitalised at the time of his arrest, we feel that he should have been be allowed to continue under medical treatment in the hospital even if with police surveillance. Even persons accused of diabolic crimes are not denied medical assistance in case of health problems.

The health condition of 62-year old Ajit, a heart patient who had already undergone a bypass surgery, is a matter of deep concern and we demand that that the ATS should disclose his health condition forthwith and provide him with the necessary medical help. We also demand that Ajit and his friend should be enabled to access a legal counsel of their choice as entitled by the constitution. We call upon all persons committed to human rights and the principle of the right to life guaranteed under the constitution to condemn the action of the ATS arresting a person from the hospital and join the demand for giving a proper and fair opportunity for Ajit and Ismail to present their case in the court with the aid of the legal counsel of their choice. .

Signatories Name

1: Prof. P. Haragopal : Professor, Emeritus, National Law University of India
2: Prof. Prabhat Patnaik : Centre of Economic Studies & Planning, JNU
3: Prof. Amit Bhaduri : Professor, Emeritus Centre of Economic Studies & Planning, JNU
4: Prof. Nivedita Menon : School of International Studies, JNU
5: Prof. AK Ramakrishnan : School of International Studies JNU
6: Prof. Amit Bhattacharyya : Jadavpur University
7: Sujato Bhadra : Association for the Protection of Democratic Rights
8: K Satchidanandan : Poet
9: TT Sreekumar : Professor MICA Ahemadabad
10: Meena Kandasami : Writer
11: Najmal Babu (TN Joy) : Social Activist
12: KT Rammohan : Dean, School of Social Sciences MG University
13: Civic Chandran : Poet and social activist
14: B. Rajeevan : Writer
15: Nissar Ahamed : Writer
16: K.A. Mohandas : Social Activist
17: T.G. Jacob : Writer
18: V.Vijayakumar : Writer
19: Bernard D’Mello : Deputy Editor Economic and Political Weekly
20: K Venugopal : Social Activist
21: Anand Teltumbde : Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur
22: Anwar Ali : Poet
23: SAR Geelani : Professor Delhi University
24: Rona Wilson : Social activist
25: Thushar Nirmal Saradhy : Human Rights Activist
26: Jolly Chirayath : Cultural Activist
27: Adv. Murugan : Human Rights Activist
28. Jesse Knutson :University of Hawaii