Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath has given the “police and right-wing goons free rein and impunity to shoot, destroy properties and torture people for exercising their democratic rights to dissent and protest peacefully”
Mohd Aasif | Clarion India
LUCKNOW – The National Confederation of Human Rights Organisations (NCHRO) and rights activists have expressed their deep concern over the condition of civil rights and the law and order situation in Uttar Pradesh during an online press conference on Tuesday.
Advocate A Mohamed Yusuff, Secretary, NCHRO, said that after the passage of the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019 (CAA), which he described as anti-constitutional and discriminatory, the central government and BJP ruled state governments dealt brutally with democratic agitations that erupted across the country.
“The BJP and its state governments violated the very ethos the nation has been founded on. Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath communalised the issue and gave the police and right-wing goons free rein and impunity to shoot, destroy properties and torture people for exercising their democratic rights to dissent and protest peacefully”, said Advocate Sharfuddin Ahmad, Vice President of Social Democratic Party of India (SDPI).
Talking about exploitation of the lockdown situation, Advocate Kamal Krishna Roy, said that it is being misused to take revenge against all opponents in the state. “Human Rights activists, political leaders, students and innocent people are being intimidated and harassed by the police on a daily basis. Draconian provisions are being slapped on them and implicating them in fabricated cases. Extrajudicial killings, unlawful arrests and harassment of innocents are alarmingly on the rise”.
It is essential that a Supreme Court monitored-judicial enquiry be held in the recent extra-judicial execution of some criminals in Kanpur and other places in UP.
The UP Police, as activists claimed, is carrying out a witch-hunt against activists by defaming them as rioters and terrorists. The genuine people’s voices are labelled as anti-nationals to legitimise brutal crackdown by the police.
Recently, Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) student-activist Sharjeel Usmani who was vocal against the government’s oppression was arrested on fabricated charges.
“Mufti Muhammed Shahzad, UP State ad hoc Committee member of Popular Front of India was arrested because he had filed a Public Interest Litigation in the high court requesting an impartial judicial probe headed by a sitting or retired Supreme Court or High Court judge on the role of UP Police,” said E.M. Abdul Rahiman, Vice Chairman of Popular Front of India. It is alleged that police indulged in violence during the demonstrations against the CAA / NRC in Uttar Pradesh on Dec. 19, 2019 onwards.
He said the arrest of Dr. Kafeel Khan is a clear case of vendetta politics where the BJP government is using all means available to destroy his life. Many such activists are incarcerated on fake charges and being harassed continuously. Draconian laws like Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) and National Security Act (NSA) are being used against these activists.
“Ironically”, said Rajiv Yadav, General Secretary of Rihai Manch, “the provisions of the Uttar Pradesh Gangsters and Anti-Social Activities (Prevention) Act, 1986 (In short, Gangsters Act) and UP Control of Goondas Act, 1970 (In short, Goondas Act) are invoked against the activists fighting democratically for their right to live in the country they were born. While the literal goondas, gangsters and anti-social elements are roaming free across the state with impunity. Apart from this, again and again the false cases were slapped against the activists, who were already incarcerated in jail and those who were released on bail.”
“The UP administration, as part of breaking the economic backbone of the Muslim community”, Seema Azad, Editor of Dastak Magazine said, “has now started a new draconian action of attaching people’s properties in the guise of getting recompense for the alleged vandalism during the anti-CAA protests. Police can book anyone by alleging their involvement in rioting cases and their property can be attached. This is a new strategy to not only destroy the individuals by incarcerating them; but also permanently damaging their future by taking away their properties.”
Former MP Obaidullah Khan Azmi condemned the silence of opposition parties. He said, “The state government, through such anti-democratic and violent measures seeks to eliminate all forms of opposition in the state. It is rather unfortunate that leading opposition parties in the state are silent on these issues, giving the state government a clean run to implement these measures. India is losing its ‘secular identity’,” he said.
Ravi Nair, Director, South Asian Human Rights Documentation Centre (SAHRDC), Delhi said that the fight has to be taken up to international level if the issue is not resolved inside the boundaries of the countries.