Marxist India : News From CPI(M)
May 11, 2020
Leaders of eight political parties have addressed a letter to the
President of India demanding the immediate release of opposition
leaders and human rights activists and calling for an end to a
politics of vendetta against protesters and political dissenters.
The letter sent this morning is being released for publication.
CPI(M) Central Committee Office
The President of India
Dear Rashtrapathi ji,
We, the undersigned, are writing to you to express concern and
condemnation at the spate of arrests of students and activists under
the draconian UAPA during the time when the country and people are
dealing with the Covid-19 pandemic.
This is a time when people all over the country, and the world, are
experiencing fear and uncertainty about their well-being, and the
safety of their loved ones. The central government’s priority must be
to single mindedly focus in effectively dealing with this pandemic
while catering to the needs of the people and their requirements.
“Your government’s“ priority must be to deal with the problems that
have emerged affecting the lives and livelihoods of crores of people,
as reflected in the plight of the migrant workers, many of whom have
lost their lives due to hunger, exhaustion and walking many kms to
reach their homes. The central government has done very little to
provide relief and rations to such people.
Many countries in the world are seeking to release prisoners so as to
prevent the spread of Covid-19 in prisons. In India too, the Supreme
Court advised the release of prisoners on bail or parole to reduce
crowding in prisons. The situation at the Arthur Road prison in Mumbai
is a testimony to such dangers. Even physically disabled people with
known serious medical conditions like Dr. G N. Saibaba and others are
not being allowed to seek competent medical treatment.
At such a time, it is shocking to see the Government of India jailing
academics, activists, women, and students, putting their health and
safety at grave risk.
• In Delhi, the police directly under the Home Ministry is
arresting prominent activists including women involved in the totally
peaceful anti-CAA movement under the draconian UAPA on totally
manufactured charges seeking to link them with the communal violence
in Delhi. In addition, scores of students are being called for
interrogation by the Special Branch and intimidated. The victims in
the violence perpetrated in JNU are being targeted while there has not
been a single arrest of those outsiders who unleashed this violence
against students and teachers. It is also shocking to note that
certain communities are being targeted while the perpetrators of
communally charged violence, established in various video recordings,
including prominent leaders of the ruling party are moving around scot
• In the communal violence in north east Delhi, in spite of prima
facie evidence of police connivance and the involvement of mobs
attacking minority areas identified in the videos, the Delhi police is
making one sided arrests of young Muslim men and interrogating only
members of the minority community, creating a sense of insecurity
• The arrests of Anand Teltumbde and Gautam Navlakha in the Bhima
Koregaon case even while continuing the detention of activists Sudha
Bharadwaj and others without any evidence is another shocking example
of how civil liberties are being trampled.
• In Kashmir the continuing detention of former Chief Minister
Mehbooba Mufti and many others is condemnable. So also is condemnable
that prisoners from Kashmir are locked up in various jails across the
• The vindictive approach of the Government in continuing the
detention of Shri Laloo Prasad Yadav in spite of his ill health and
the stringent conditions of his imprisonment is condemnable.
We request you to urge the Government to reverse this course by
releasing opposition leaders and human rights activists and ceasing
the pursuit of a politics of vendetta against protesters and political
dissenters at a time when the country and people have to be united in
dealing with this Covid pandemic.