Guest Post by SHARIB ALI
REPEAL UAPA: JTSA REPORT IN PERSPECTIVE, AND BEYOND
The state fabricates terror. There is enough evidence to take it to court on that count. Yet, how does one construe ‘fabrication’- what is implied by it? First, that the state has orchestrated elaborate attacks- violence to terrorize its people for certain legal, electoral and political ends. Second, that it has, through the use of laws like Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA) against specific segments of its population has consciously manufactured a state of terror- a collectively imagined perception of threat that the nation faces from a particular people. The ends, always remain the same.
Though there is evidence of the agencies of the state, or actors within them, expressly participating in orchestrating large scale terror attacks (think col. Purohit), it is the latter- where terror within specific communities is manufactured in the eyes of the law and the people- that I deal with here, today. ‘Guilt by Association’ – The JTSA (Jamia Teachers Solidarity Association) report on UAPA cases in Madhya Pradesh, is a crucial case in point.
Continue reading The UAPA in Madhya Pradesh – The JTSA Report in Perspective, and Beyond: Sharib Ali
Guest Post by JAMIA TEACHERS’ SOLIDARITY ASSOCIATION
On 11 December, 2013 a two judge bench of the Supreme Court of India (SC) ruled that section 377 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC), which considers homosexuality a criminal offence, does not ‘suffer from the vice of unconstitutionality’ and hence, legally valid. By this highly regrettable ruling the apex court astounded and disappointed not only the LGBT community but the wider public at large.
Continue reading JTSA extends support to the LGBT community, calls for committed judicial activism: JTSA
Guest Post by Jamia Teachers’ Solidarity Association ( JTSA ), Delhi.
Beyond Reasonable Doubt? The Conviction of Shahzad Ahmad is a detailed analysis and critique by the Jamia Teachers’ Solidarity Association of the judgment awarded on the 25th of July by the 2nd Additional Session Judge, Delhi-South East (Saket) Court in the ‘State vs. Shahzad Ahmad@Pappu’ case, also known as the ‘Batla House Encounter’ case. Yesterday, on the 30th of July, the judge confirmed his verdict of ‘guilty’ and awarded Shahzad Ahmad the punishment of imprisonment for life and a fine of Rs. 95,000/-. The JTSA, which has been following the Batla House Encounter since 2008 presents its findings on the trial in this booklet, and disputes the guilty verdict awarded to Shahzad Ahmad. Kafila is carrying this publication (as part of a series of posts on the Batla House Encounter) as a downloadable pdf format file.
This release was put out today by the JAMIA TEACHERS’ SOLIDARITY ASSOCIATION
The pushing through of the amendments to Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA) in the Rajya Sabha, despite protests and calls for further discussion and deferment, indicates the consensus between Congress and BJP on the issue of civil rights. The passage of the amendments, which now bring economic offences under terrorism, and broaden the definition of person to an extent that will criminalize all forms of associations, will provide sweeping powers to the police and security agencies, and create a regime of suspicion.
False Claims of the Government:
Responding to the debate in the RS, Minister of State for Home stated that, “The Act does not give sweeping powers to the police and there are checks and balances that will prevent misuse of the Act.” He further assured the House that the law was “religion neutral” and would not target any particular community.
This is patently false. Continue reading Passage of Amendments to UAPA – Further erosion of Constitutional Rights: JTSA
Guest post by MANISHA SETHI
An RTI enquiry has revealed that Delhi Police Special Cell’s conviction rate is a paltry 30 per cent. Nearly 70 per cent of the accused it charge-sheeted over the past five years were acquitted for want of credible evidence. Do these figures tell us something? A news story in a leading English daily bemoans this trifling record and quotes a senior police officerattributing this to the fact that “police sometimes get tangled in cross evidences and it becomes tough when you rely more on circumstantial evidences”. [i] This evokes the image of a bumbling policeman, reminiscent almost of Jacques Clouseau, tripping over reams and strings of evidences, in an impossible attempt to build a watertight case against the villains. But Special Cell couldn’t be farther from this sort of cute sloppiness. Continue reading Delhi Police Special Cell – Encounters, Frame-ups, Impunity: Manisha Sethi
This release comes from the JAMIA TEACHERS’ SOLIDARITY ASSOCIATION
The Maharashtra ATS claims to have cracked the 13/7 blasts case. Its chief has revealed in a press conference that Indian Mujahideen was behind the Mumbai blasts. And yet, the Ministry of Home Affairs remains far from impressed—indeed, it appears rather irritated. And the press, also unusually, has been circumspect about his revelations. The ATS Chief says that he did not want to call a press conference. But the rumours about Naquee’s IB links were threatening the credibility of the ATS. Such were his compulsions when he launched into a monologue about the ‘breakthrough’ his team—under his guidance of course—had achieved.
Despite his loud proclamations however, there are few who are willing to buy the ATS’ arguments. Here are some issues for the ATS Chief to mull over: Continue reading Some Questions for the Maharashtra ATS Chief: JTSA
This release comes from the JAMIA TEACHERS’ SOLIDARITY ASSOCIATION
You say there shall be no re-visit of the Batla House encounter. You are of course absolutely right. All those agencies who conducted the encounter have already given themselves a clean chit. What further proof could be required of the genuineness of the encounter than the fact that no less than Karnail Singh, Joint Commissioner of Police, Special Cell, Delhi, (who by the by, was also trying to derail the probe into Ishrat Jahan encounter) wrote to the Lt Governor and the NHRC vouching for the innocence of their gallant heroes. Speaking of gallant heroes, we are sure it has been brought to your notice—or maybe it hasn’t—that some of the brave hearts of the Delhi Police Special Cell have been indicted by the courts in the past couple of years for scripting and executing fake encounters. These are the very men whom you have been felicitating with gallantry awards and Presidents’ medals. But Sir, rest assured, we are not asking what sort of democracies fete and glorify killers. Our kind, of course. Continue reading JTSA lists some more ‘genuine’ encounters in Delhi for the Home Minister
[Here on Kafila we have written before about the new contours of class struggle and unrest in industrial zones. As the demands of capital become ever more rapacious, and worker’s bodies more dispensable, the last few years have witnessed increasing incidents of violent conflict in urban industrial areas across the country. In each case workers’ demands fall on the deaf ears of an increasingly unresponsive management backed by the weapons of the state. When the simmering violence finally comes to a head, it is workers who are demonized. We carry below a report by the Jamia Teacher’s Solidarity Association on the recent outbreaks of violence in Ludhiana’s industrial zone.]
A fact-finding team of university teachers from Delhi visited Ludhiana on Sunday (20.12.2009) to ascertain the facts of the incidents of violence that have gripped the industrial part of the city involving migrant workers. The team visited Dhandari kalan and Sherpur and spoke to a large number of migrant workers and visited their homes. The team found that despite a large number of the migrant workforce (around 12 lakhs) living in Ludhiana for over 15 years, sometimes even much longer, a majority of them had no voting rights or ration cards. Even when they applied for voters I cards, their applications were rejected on spurious grounds. It is not surprising that no political party, not even the local Member of Parliament, Mr. Manish Tiwari, has bothered to visit them. This attitude percolates down to the bureaucracy and police force, who treat the migrant workers as virtually second class citizens. Continue reading Report on Violence Against Workers in Ludhiana: JTSA