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29 Jul 2011

People’s Union for Democratic Rights, Delhi (PUDR) condemns the threats being issued by the CPI (Maoist) party to members of the Gram Swaraj Abhiyan and to others investigating and protesting against the killing of Niyamat Ansari at Manika block in Jharkhand.

Niyamat Ansari, the convenor of Manika block unit of Gram Swaraj Abhiyan and the MNREGA Support Centre was killed on 2 March this year.

PUDR expresses concern that posters and printed leaflets had appeared in Manika claiming to have been brought out by the CPI(Maoist) threatening to punish Gokul Vasant, Nand Lal, Jean Dreze and Aruna Roy for claiming Niyamat Ansari’s innocence. It also contained a renewed threat to the lives of Bhukan Singh and members of the Gram Swaraj Abhiyan.

The CPI(Maoist) party has owned up and justified the killing of Ansari by claiming he was involved in corrupt practices. A two member team comprising Gokul Vasant and Nand Lal from Daltonganj have investigated these allegations and declared them to be baseless.

PUDR and many other organisations have condemned the killing and demanded that the CPI(Maoist) hand over the culprits, that they publicly apologise and that an assurance be given that no harm should come to Ansari’s colleague, Bhukan Singh.

PUDR finds this kind of intolerant behaviour by the CPI (Maoist) wholly unacceptable. We urge the CPI(Maoist) to recognize that people have a right to criticize and a right to carry on politics in accordance with their beliefs. Intolerance of people’s rights to question does not pave the way for a just society.

PUDR demands that the CPI (Maoist) withdraw the threat immediately and respect the right of people to form associations as per their conscience.

Paramjeet Singh
Harish Dhawan
Secretaries, PUDR