PUDR hails the release of A. G. Perarivalan by the Supreme Court on May 18, 2022. A life-imprisonment convict in the Rajiv Gandhi assassination case (1991), Perarivalan’s over thirty- year struggle for justice raises several issues, ranging from the unfairness of long incarceration to the uncommon fight that his mother, Arputhammal, has waged.
Tomorrow, 14th April 2022 marks the completion of two years of PUDR activist Gautam Navlakha’s surrender before the NIA. One of sixteen accused in the infamous Bhima Koregaon case, Gautam has been imprisoned in Taloja Central Jail, Navi Mumbai since 25 May 2020.
People’s Union for Democratic Rights, PUDR, welcomes the Union Government’s decision (March 31, 2022), to significantly reduce the ambit of disturbed areas under the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA). According to news reports, this decision will be effective in 15 police stations in seven districts of Nagaland; in 15 police stations in six districts of Manipur; and wholly in 23 districts and partially in one district in Assam.
PEOPLE’S UNION FOR DEMOCRATIC RIGHTS
The recent arrest of Fahad Shah, editor of Kashmir Walla, under S 13 of UAPA and S 124 A and 505 of IPC for ‘uploading anti-national content’ raises a debate about the fate of journalism in times of conflict. Shah was arrested as he had uploaded Inayat Ahmad Mir’s family’s protest over the police’s claim that Mir was a “hybrid terrorist”—an unlisted and camouflaged militant—in the encounter that had happened in his house in Naira Pulwama on January 30, 2022.
The invocation of UAPA charges against members of a fact-finding team shortly after they released its findings on the communal violence in Tripura, is shocking and condemnable. Besides S. 13 of UAPA (punishment for ‘unlawful activity’), a slew of IPC offences has also been invoked: 153 A and B of IPC (promoting enmity and anti-national activities), 120 B, 503, 504 (criminal conspiracy, criminal intimidation, breach of peace) as well as charges of forgery and fraudulence for harming reputation (469, 471).
Marking a month since Stan Swamy passed away in judicial custody in a private hospital, a month in which no official inquiry, even the mandated magisterial inquest, has not been initiated, Framed to die: The case of Stan Swamy documents the manner in which Stan Swamy was framed, fettered, and finally forced towards a fatal illness under due process of law called Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act.