On registration of a case against Amnesty International India

August 16, 2016

ASSOCIATION FOR PROTECTION OF DEMOCRATIC RIGHTS (APDR)

APDR PRESS RELESE 16 August 2016
On registration of a case against Amnesty International India

APDR strongly condemns the registration of a case by Karnataka police against Amnesty International India under varioussections of the IPC including Sec 124A (sedition) for organising a programme on Kashmir in Bengaluru on 13 August.

It was a publicly announced programme where, according to AI India, the police were invited and present. The organisers mentioned that it was the first in a series of meetings scheduled to be held in Bengaluru, Mumbai and Delhi in which families interviewed for an AI report entitled ‘DENIED – Failures in accountability for human rights violations by security force personnel in Jammu and Kashmir’ were “to tell their stories and urge the Ministry of Home Affairs and Ministry of Defence to ensure the right to truth for victims, their families and affected communities and ensure that they have access to full disclosure about human rights violations”.

Interpreting such activities as sedition clearly violates basic juridical principles established by the Supreme Court. The police action, which could not have been taken without the go-ahead of the state government, is nothing but an effort to curtail freedom of expression, threaten human rights activists and muzzle all voices seeking justice.

The pretext of the police that they had received complaints from some quarters that “anti-national” slogans were raised from the audience does not hold water. The organisers have categorically denied the charge. Even if such slogans were raised, the organisers cannot be held responsible and the police have not given any proof that the programme incited violence.

We demand that the case be withdrawn immediately and such harassment of human rights activists must not recur anywhere in the country.

(Dhiraj Sengupta)
General Secretary

18, MADAN BARAL LANE, KOLKATA- 700 012, (M) 9432276415
E-mail: apdr.wb@gmail.com. Website: apdr.org.in