Our dreams of Justice and Democracy is only becoming more extinct every day. By neglecting the civil right and enforcing atrocious terror laws, the state is exercising despotism over the lives of the citizens. These laws were established in 1857 to suppress the struggles of India’s First War of Independence. These were the terror laws that were cooked by the European colonizers to plunder India off its public resources and public wealth by suppressing Indian citizens. These colonial laws that were executed for 90 years, i.e. from 1857 to 1947, should have been abrogated with the achievement of independence. But instead of implementing laws that are appropriate and apt for a democratic India, our administrators enforced all the more brutal laws. Preventive Detection Act, Defense of Indian Rules, ESMA. TADA, POTA, etc. are only a few among them. Among these the most recent is the UAPA.
UAPA assures us about the growing strength of the discriminative terrorism against Muslims, Dalits and Adivasis. These communities among all citizens are specially targeted and labeled as terrorists and extremists as per the Lynch laws such as UAPA and so subjected to brutalities and violence in prisons. All terror laws including the UAPA are against the citizens and the constitutions in its structure itself. UAPA enables to brand anyone as terrorist and for their indefinite imprisonment. This law grants unlimited powers to the police machinery and creates an opportunity for alleging innocent people with crimes. The state enacts such laws to establish imperialism within the country. The UAPA that was enacted in 1987, underwent many amendments to become as malicious as it is now. This is, as mentioned in its preamble, a part of the international maneuver, i.e. the UAPA has been enforced according to America’s dictation that all countries should enact laws to counter terrorism. It only becomes evident that this law has been enacted to intensify the spread of Islamophobia, which is led by America. Therefore, the struggle against the draconian laws is equivalent to the struggle against imperialism.
An insolent attitude that people are only allowed to accept and love their government and that a government that comes to power through elections, should not be probed or questioned, is maintained by India and such Democracies. The notion that the state is the nation and the nation is the state, is being thus served. When the nation and state are considered to be the same, terrorist attacks and hunt for extremists plotted by the state, changes to become the common interest of nation. This helps to justify the persecution of Adivasis, Dalits, Muslims and Maoists and also enable them to carry out their selfish intentions behind this mask. Those who voice against the government’s interests for development are branded not only as anti-developmental/luddites but also as anti-national. More terror laws are being enforced to suppress people’s struggles against the governments and to annihilate those who lead these struggles. Those in the vanguard of these protests are held in prisons without any hearing or trials.
It is the common argument that the constitution and the judiciary exist to ensure that the government does not exercise excessive powers over the nation. In fact, both these institutions are nullified while the state hunts are carried out in India as well as Kerala. While the social condition which allows us to criticize the government is known as Democracy, any contradictory condition is that of fascism. Every autocracy allows to comply with them but only in a democratic situation can we find the freedom to dissent. Therefore, in the present scenario, every democrat should be thinking of methods to overcome the state’s practice of belligerent sovereignty. Only through the expansion of public platforms for questioning and criticizing the state, can we dream about Human Rights. With an aim of creating such a democratic condition, Solidarity Youth Movement organized a Manifesto Release and a Human RightsConvention entitled ‘Human Rights Demands the Kerala Government’ on the 27th of July, 2016 at the Bar Council Hall, Ernakulam. The manifesto was released at this program attended by renowned Human Rights activists and the public. This program was organized as a part of the various Struggles for Civil Rights conducted by Solidarity Youth Movement throughout the country and also in accordance with the new circumstances created under the recently elected government in Kerala. The convention for the Manifesto Release was inaugurated by the eminent advocate based in Bangalore, Adv. A. Balan. He said the Dalit-Adivasi- Minorities hunt is a big issue that the country is facing. By implementing laws such as the UAPA, the government is itself leading the Human Rights violations. Therefore, all such draconian laws should be repealed, he added. He addressed stressing on the UAPA cases outside Kerala for which youth from Kerala have been accused. Solidarity state president, T. Shakir who presided over the program, said the Kerala Government should release a white paper detailing all the UAPA cases that have been registered so far and also the procedures that have been followed so far in these cases. In the recent past where the terror laws of UAPA that destroys the democratic rights and fundamental rights guaranteed to its citizens by the Indian constitution, have been excessively used, the state government should reconsider the application of these laws. He also said that the current LDF led government should be determined in not executing the UAPA laws in the state just like how TADA was not implemented in the state during the A.K. Antony government. The release of the manifesto prepared to be presented to the Kerala government was carried out by eminent Human Rights activist and chairman of Justice for Maudani Forum, Dr. Sebastian Paul by handing over the manifesto to Adv. Madhusudan. Dr. Sebastian Paul said that India was moving into a stage where people are mistakenly believing that issues of Human Rights violation are only those issue taken up by the Human Rights Commissions. Open Court is fundamentally a civil right. To obstruct the public from knowing the court proceedings is an intensive obliteration of Human Rights. He also added that the current tension between the media and the judiciary in Kerala is sabotaging this fundamental aspect of Civil Rights.
The violation of Human Rights due to the state’s Developmental policies is the reason for the various protests and struggles in Kerala, said C.R. Neelakandan. He was addressing on the matter ‘Breach of Human Rights against People’s Struggles.’ The major Human Rights violation in Kerala are caused by the Developmental Policies. Those who protest against theDevelopmental schemes that adversely affect the people and the environment, are arrested by branding them as anti-development and for the allegations that they hinder the development of the country, they are also called anti-nationals and traitors. So, the government should ensure that the developmental schemes do not harm the people or the environment, he added. He also demanded that workers of all such movements and struggles who have been arrested should be released unconditionally.
To illustrate any religion, race, class, caste or society as fearful should be considered as an offensive crime and anyone involved in it should be punished; for this laws should be legislated, said Adv. P.A. Pouran. He was speaking on the subject ‘Maoist hunt in Kerala and Human Rights Issues.’ The method of labelling those who protest against the Development Mafias for the destruction of the forests in the Western Ghat region of Kerala, as Maoists and suppressing them is commonly practiced in Kerala. The government should ensure that the police machinery do not hunt down Adivasis, Human Rights activists or volunteers of people’s struggles, he insisted.
The POSCO act, which is constantly used against the Adivasis, should be repealed, suggested Adv. K.K. Preetha. She talked, presenting the subject ‘Dalit-Adivasi communities and Human Rights Issues’. Hitherto, no government has been able to sincerely take up the legal problems encountered by the Adivasi-Dalit communities. The Dalits, who make up to 20 percent of the population, own only 2 percent of land. Many of them are made to live in colonies. For that reason, the promise of 3 cents of land for each Adivasi should be increased to that of one acre, said Adv. K.K. Preetha.
Adv. P.C. Noushad said that the anti-human and anti-constitutional, chagrin laws of UAPA are being thrust upon the minority communities. He was addressing on the UAPA cases in Kerala. Unlike UAPA, not many cases were charged under the other draconian laws such as TADA and POTA. No cases have been registered under the POTA at all. In fact, cases could not be charged under the POTA without the authorization of the Home Secretary. Surprisingly, any ordinary police officer can charge a case under the UAPA at his will. Up to now, there are about 36 UAPA cases from Kerala. Cases have been charged under UAPA for the Kozhikode twin blasts, Bangalore blast, Kashmir Recruitment case, Muvattupuzha hand-chopping case, Narath case, etc. This was mostly the result of the prejudices and preconceptions against the minority communities, he said.
Director of Quill Foundation, K.K. Suhail presented the subject ‘The backroom of Terror allegations.’ He said that the state-media canvassing of the Muslim Terrorist-Extremist cases creates a pretext for the fear of Islamic Terrorism in the society. At the same time, the government statistics reveal that the aftermath of these attacks are often smaller when compared to that of the state violence. Such speculations become the incentive to intensify Islamophobia.
If anybody is falsely alleged and accused as a terrorist, Maoist or insurgent by a Police officer, these police officers should be punished by law and the compensation for the accused should be paid by the corresponding police, said renowned Human Rights activist and lawyer, Adv. Madhusudan. He was addressing at the Human Rights convention, concluding and wrapping up the event.Likewise, legislatures including bodies such as the Legislative Assembly and its Intelligence agencies that currently do not exist and investigative agencies should also be brought under the legislatures. The additional expenses of the intelligence agencies should be subjected to auditing, he added.
Many victims of Human Rights violation in varied spheres, shared their experiences at the program. Shaheer Thana, Anil Kathikkudam, were amongst those who shared their experiences. K.K. Suhail and Sadiq Uliyil also spoke at the program.
Human Rights groups demand the Kerala Government of…
- The details of all the UAPA cases in Kerala that have been registered and the legal proceeding in each case, thus far.
- In the recent scenario which witnesses the extensive execution of the terror laws of UAPA which shatters the democratic rights and the fundamental rights of the citizens guaranteed by the Indian constitution, the implementation of these laws in Kerala should be reconsidered by the state government.
- To illustrate any religion, race, class, caste or society as fearful should be considered as an offensive crime and anyone involved in it should be punished for which new laws should be legislated.
- Those who are unjustifiably held in prisons or police custodies and when the court acquits them, should be given a satisfactory compensation.
- If anybody is falsely implied and accused as a terrorist, Maoist or insurgent by a Police officer, the Kerala government is requested to punish these police officers by law and the compensation for the innocent who were accused, should be collected from the corresponding police officers itself and paid to the innocent.
- Legislature bodies including the Legislative Assembly and its Intelligence agencies that currently do not exist and investigative agencies should be entirely brought under the corresponding legislatures. The expenses of the intelligence agencies should be subjected to auditing.
- The individuals as well as the organizations who protest against the Development Mafias for the destruction of the forests in the Western Ghat region of Kerala, are customarily branded as Maoists and suppressing them is a common practice in Kerala. The state government should ensure that the police machinery do not hunt down the Adivasis, Human Rights activists or volunteers of such popular struggles.
- Those who protest against the Developmental schemes that adversely affect the people and the environment, are arrested by branding them as anti-development and for the allegations that they hinder the development of the country, there are efforts to brand them as anti-nationals and traitors. So, the state government should ensure that the developmental schemes of the government do not harm the people or the environment.