Archive for the 'Law Enforcement' Category

JNU: why try the students, try media and police for lies and violence

I didn’t write before because it was not clear from conflicting media reports and everyday changing narrative what actually transpired.
Now that we know most of the truth, it is much easier to make up my mind. You need not judge this post based on my political leanings. I have none: I am neither a right-winger or staunch leftist. Perhaps I lean at the center but I am no fence-sitter. I weigh the issue and lean on either side where reason lies. To be honest, I don’t think we live in an age where we can afford to be lazy to blindly follow any ideology. But I digress. You should judge this post purely based on facts and reason.
A concise recap of the events of JNU would be: Students gathered on the eve of death anniversary of Afzal Guru and raised anti-India and pro-Guru slogans. Media blamed one of them with Muslim name to be JEM (Jaish-e-Mohamed) sympathiser. Lawyers beat up one of them. As a result, other alleged ‘anti-national’students went underground fearing their safety. Nation, oh right-wing nationalists, were agog with demands of shutting down entire JNU since it is funded by taxpayer’s money.
1. Is there a case against the students for raising anti-India slogans?
There is NO video evidence of Pro-Pak slogans except in doctored video. There is NO video evidence of JNU students even making pro-Kashmir, Azadi slogans. Witnesses say that there was a Kashmiri group at centre who retaliated in protest of ABVP slogans about Kashmir.
Umar Khalid accepted post-surrender he supported Guru and didn’t believe that latter was terrorist. He made slogans about it. It is Supereme court prerogative to hold him in contempt, but thinking someone innocent is not ”sedition’’. (BTW, AG rejected petition for contempt of court.) Heck, I believe in innocence of Arushi’s parents and speak about it everywhere. If I hold a peaceful protest against the HC judgment, how different is that? Okay, perhaps a bit. My dissent against Arushi judgment is not dissent against Índian state. But, we will come to that later. Though is it much different from RSS/BJP celebrating Godse as hero?
Police FIR is based on not any witness, heck not even their own testimony, but based on footage shown on Zee tv, which has now been known to be doctored. Read how  Zee TV fuelled state action against JNU students. There are some internal JNU investigation listing names of student present and listing slogans raised. It is to be proven if the named students in internal report were indeed the ones who shouted ‘seditionist slogans’and not the outsiders as JNU students/faculty claim. There is debate around that too: 16 out of list (and this list is prepared by the ‘intelligence unit” of Delhi police) of 19 students are not current students of JNU.
So, do we have any case against the students? A very debatable one.
Even if we assume if the accused students did raise slogans. Let’s go over them.
They called Guru’s death a ‘judicial murder’. State’s right to freedom of expression allows that. SC doesn’t want to pursue contempt of court either.
Har ghar mein Afzal. I deem this slogan okay too. It maybe distasteful to ‘nationalists’ but keeping sympathies, even with convicted criminals, is not a crime.
Kashmir ki azadi. I say it is problematic for state but it is understandable since Kashmir is unresolved issue. Though JNU witnesses claim these slogan-raisers weren’t Kanhaiya, Umar or Anirban, the arrested three, but Kashmiris who were outsiders.
Bharat ki barbadi. Celebrating death of CRPF in Maoist struggle. Personally I find these very, very painful and unacceptable. But, these slogans even if proven were raised in the JNU gathering had no intent to violence. So is it really, really sedition? Worth reading Dilip’s article what is it anti-national about shouting Pakistan Zindabad.
2. Media Lied 90% about the JNU students to vilify them in the eyes of nation.
As we know now, Umar Khalid is no terrorist and has no links with any terrorist organisation in any country. Lie number 2: He is not JEM supporter. He didn’t go to Pak. He didn’t make 800 calls to Bangladesh, Pak or Gulf.
Kanhaiya, who people seem to have forgotten, was also framed by the same doctored video as mentioned by police FIR. Heck there is a case against media for willfully misrepresenting the facts! The story was so distorted that a Zee journalist handling the story resigned.  I wish students would sue these channels and these channels should receive show cause notice by Information and Broadcasting Ministry.
3. Police role: No law and Order: Unjust torture/harassment
Police watched as mute spectator while lawyer goons at Patiala House beat up Kanhaiya. He was hurt and he may well be innocent. Forget their protection. Police bothered every Kashmiri student on campus. They interrogated friends of Umar Khalid. They tracked his phone records and hounded all friends, journalists who spoke to him on accusations why didn’t they report Umar. Umar, to be noted, hasn’t been proven a terrorist that you dig into every aspect of his life leaving no privacy.
Would you punish somebody stole bread for assuage their hunger with same intensity as you would punish someone who stole nuclear codes to share with neighboring country? These students merely expressed ideas and dissent and anger without violence. As someone said on Twitter, sledgehammer is being used for the ant.
In nationwide discussion around victimhood of Umar, people are forgetting Kanhaiya’s plight. (Sorry, Kanhaiya and you, Anirban, you don’t have right name to claim credible victimhood even if you are victims – wrong times – but more about that later). First JNU VC allowed police to enter campus to quietly pick up Kanhaiya. Action against him was so swift and bad that there were resignations even in the cadres of ABVP! (VC would wisen up and not allow police on campus and Umar would get a chance to surrender peacefully.) After being beaten up by lawyer goons, Kanhaiya is now in judicial custody for 14 days for raising  ánti-national’slogans, a charge which is yet to be proven. His bail application will be heard on 29th Feb, till then he cools his heels in jail. But, lawyer goon who beat him was arrested and even released. Justice in my India!
Question we should ask ourselves: Are honest, even if angry and distasteful, but peacefully articulated ideas are more harmful than willful lies and violence against individuals?
I would leave you with this disarming video of Umar Khalid, where he doesn’t still claim any victimhood for being a Muslim but raises many valid points.
umar
Photo: Courtesy Scroll.in

Dare to Stand, Dare to Die?

I have always spoken how only writing about issues may not be enough. We may need to be part of the system, such as be in politics. Having said that, I have always known that it is easier said than done. One reason I can’t join politics is that I need a regular income to pay off my bills and loans. I don’t have enough money and time it takes to campaign. I am not alone in it, it is same with almost all of us aware citizens.

There is another bigger reason for our aversion to take part in Indian politics, which we all know but are shy to admit it. Standing up in political arena against corrupt biggies is also about risking your life. Just as Bahadur Sonkar, Lok Sabha (LS) candidate from Indian Justice Party (IJP) candidate found out hard way.

Bahadur,  a Dalit leader who was contesting in LS elections from Jaunpur constituency in Uttar Pradesh, was found hanging from a tree near his home on 14 April, 2009. His chief opponent was BSP’s Dhanajyay Singh, who is a Don-turned-politician.

Continue reading ‘Dare to Stand, Dare to Die?’

It Happened in Bangalore!

After Mangalore, it happened in Bangalore on 6th February, 2009.

Edited to add: Other than this, 4 more incidents of attacks on women have been reported in Bangalore. Read another victim, Archana’s  account here. More reports pouring in Hindu. See comment section and PCC blog for more links and updates.

Different people, different intentions. But base point remains same. Lack of law and order. Unfair treatment met out to different citizens based on status, gender and connections. It scared me. I am not ashamed to say that. But it also enraged me. It made me more determined not to cow down. I hope, after reading this story, we can find more ways to engage in something more powerful than usual chest-thumping that we do online.  😦 Your take?

A Nude peace protest against Bush's policies in New Orleans. Undignified?

A Nude peace protest against Bush's War policies in New Orleans. Undignified?

I came across this post via Goofy Mama’s blog. This is not written by me. It is written by a courageous girl Saugata Chatterjee. Story, in her own words that was first posted here:

Continue reading ‘It Happened in Bangalore!’

Freedom of Expression and Amendments to CrPC

Now don't forget Article 19 (2) either.

Now don't forget Article 19 (2) either.

19-year-old IT student, D. Ajit from Kerala, has been slapped with a criminal case for initiating an Orkut community criticising  Shiv Sena, for its “moral policing.” The case was registered after complaint by a Shiv Sena official by Thane police in 2008.

Continue reading ‘Freedom of Expression and Amendments to CrPC’

Anti-Moral Policing Protest in Delhi

The Stand Up to Moral Policing protest in Delhi was worth a visit.🙂 Well, I was not a visiter, I travelled half the Delhi (not to mention sacrificing my morning sleep on weekend :P) to be there to protest against moral policing. And I was not alone. There were others who too had traversed the whole length of the city on the Valentine day’s eve for the same cause.😀

Continue reading ‘Anti-Moral Policing Protest in Delhi’

Robbed on A Busy Street

jobless_robbedIt was this bit of local news that prompted me to write this post.  Do not dismiss this news story as just another crime. Crime sometimes walks right into you, your home. As it happened to me. In our Capital City, Delhi. Yes, here you go with my story. How I was robbed recently.

Continue reading ‘Robbed on A Busy Street’

Mumbai Under Seige

Taj Hotel Burning at Mumbai

Taj Hotel Burning at Mumbai

Image courtsey CNN-IBN slideshow

26 November: Shock reverberates in my body when I see the morning newspaper headline, while traveling for work. Mumbai under siege. 80 dead, 300 injured. I visibly withered after reading the headline. I had missed last evening (25 November) bulletin.

Was it a coincidence that a day ago I had watched Denzel WashingtonBruce WillisAnnette Bening-starrer 1998 movie, The Seige? One of the targets of attack in the movie was elite broadway after having hit the commute system. Eventually military was called to manage country’s own citizens against all prudence. Now elite hotels like Taj and Trident Oberoi are under siege. Terrorists have attacked Nariman House, CST terminal and hospitals. Since three days! Death toll and number of injured have increased since the first newspaper headline. 125 lives lost and 327 injured as per latest bulletin. You can check list of released hostages, injured, and deceased here at Mumbai Help.

Continue reading ‘Mumbai Under Seige’


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