23 September Saturday

CPI(M) Letter To PM For Immediate Release of Students, Activists Arrested Under UAPA

CPI(M) StatementUpdated: Monday May 11, 2020

Marxist India : News From CPI(M)

May 11, 2020
Press Release

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
Rashtrapathi Bhawan
New Delhi

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 
among them.

•    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.