This is a guest post by BIJU MATHEW
Tarun Mandal, Narahari Sahu and Manas Jena are dead, blown up by what the media has described as a “crude” bomb. All bombs are crude. They kill. They are meant to destroy flesh and bone. They are aimed at sucking out life. Lakshman Mandal battles for his life in a Cuttack hospital. He knows how crude a bomb is. Hopefully he will live to tell the tale of its crudeness.
This is a partisan piece. But it aims to produce balance. Almost all media reports so far have had a strong spin that the three – Narahari, Tarun and Manas – were killed while making a crude bomb. So says Mr. Satyabrata Bhoi, Jagatsinghpur SP. Nobody has bothered to ask him any further questions. It’s quite understandable. Asking any more questions might make the entire spin untenable. For instance, they could have asked: why is it that something illegal, such as crude bomb making, was being done out in the open and not within the confines of a house? Especially given that for the last month, the police have been constantly in and out of the village? Especially because there are at least a few dozen pro-POSCO folks in the village? Why would three leaders of an oppositional movement sit outside on the porch of a house that is fully identified with POSCO Pratirodh Sangran Samiti (PPSS) and make bombs – openly, for all to see – at 6.30 PM when there is enough light for anybody to see them? Isn’t crude bomb making normally confined to the indoors? How many incidents do we know of where crude bomb making was happening outside in broad daylight? Isn’t the RSS, the most famous outfit that makes crude bombs and occasionally manages to blow up its own, always known to make its bombs indoors? Continue reading Crude Questions about Crude Bombs: Biju Mathew
This memorandum was submitted on 22 March 2012; see full list of signatories at the end
A Memorandum of Demands Seeking Chief Minister’s Immediate Intervention to stop the Ongoing Brutal Atrocities/ Crimes against Dalit Communities in Odisha
We, the undersigned victims of human rights violation, representatives of various mass organisations, Non-Governmental Agencies, Community Based Organisations, Human Rights Activists, journalists and citizens belonging to the marginalised communities would like to draw your attention to the ongoing atrocities against Dalit Communities in Odisha. Continue reading Will Naveen Patnaik please wake up to atrocities against Dalits in Odisha?
This press release comes from the PEOPLE’S UNION FOR CIVIL LIBERTIES
Bhubhaneshwar / Delhi
5th December, 2011
• Appeal to the Odisha Government to withdraw the frivolous cases and RELEASE ABHAY SAHOO NOW!
• WITHDRAW ALL THE CRIMINAL CASES LODGED AGAINST THE ANTI POSCO ACTIVISTS and put a stop to repressive measures.
• PUCL APPEALS TO OTHER ORGANISATIONS TO COME TO TOGETHER AND INITIATE A NATIONAL CAMPAIGN FOR THE RELEASE OF ABHAY SAHOO AND SUPPORT OF THE POSCO PRATIRODH SANGRAM SAMITI.
The People’s Union for Civil Liberties, represented by its National Secretary Kavita Srivastava and Odisha Convenor, Pramodini Pradhan visited the area in and around Dhinkia Panchayat in Jagatsinghpur district on 1st December, 2011, where the struggle against the proposed POSCO steel plant is taking place for the last seven years. We also went to Choudwar Jail in Cuttack District on 2nd December, 2011 to meet Mr Abhay Sahoo the leader of the POSCO Pratirodh Sangharsh Samiti, who has been arrested against FIRs motivated by the administration under sections causing sexual assault, wrongfully confining somebody and causing atrocities under the SC & ST Act. Continue reading Release Abhay Sahoo Now: People’s Union for Civil Liberties
This statement, signed by many individuals and organisations, was released on 29 November by the CAMPAIGN FOR SURVIVAL AND DIGNITY
CONDEMN THE REPRESSION ON POSCO PRATIRODH SANGRAM SAMITI AND THE LIKELY IMMINENT ATTACK ON THE PEACEFUL PROTESTERS OF THE AREA
The undersigned condemn the growing brutality of the state repression being unleashed against the peaceful, democratic protesters of the POSCO project area, who are only fighting for their legal and fundamental rights. This repression has reached a peak with the arrest yesterday (Friday) of POSCO Pratirodh Sangram Samiti leader Abhay Sahoo. The government’s constant announcements of its intention to start construction in the area lead us to apprehend that there will be more violence and brutality against the movement. Continue reading Statement Condemning the Repression of the POSCO Pratirodh Sangram Samiti
The media has by and large focused on the Maoist demand of release of some of their own in exchange of the Malkangiri collector and junior engineer. The list of the total 8 of 14 demands of the Maoists that the Orissa government has agreed to makes for interesting reading:
(1) Orissa government will write to Jharkhand and Chhattisgarh to take action on the extremists demand for release of Maoist central committee members Sheela di (jailed in Jharkhand) and Padma (in Chhattisgarh) owing to their ill-health; (2) ST status for the Konda Reddy and Nukadora communities categorized as OBCs; (3) stopping the multi-purpose Polavaram project of Andhra Pradesh; (4) ‘pattas’ (record of rights) to tribals dispossessed of their land in Malkangiri and Koraput; (5) irrigation in Maribada and Maniamkonda villages in Malkangiri; (6) compensation based on HC order to Tadangi Gangulu and Ratanu Sirika who died of disease allegedly due to torture; (7) relevant laws for mining operations in Mali and Deomali bauxite mines; (8) minimum displacement of tribals and adequate compensation. [ToI]
Guest post by ARNAV DAS SHARMA and SOUMIK MUKHERJEE. Photographs by SOUMIK MUKHERJEE
Peepalguda, Koraput, Odisha: “You see, for the bridge over that rivulet, forty thousand rupees were sanctioned”, the sarpanch of Mossigam gram panchayat starts off emphatically. It is only after a good amount of probing that he confesses that it was foolish of the Public Works Department (PWD) to sanction Rs 40,000 for a bridge when a similar bridge was built seven years ago in another village for Rs 43 lakh. In any case, a slight bureaucratic nudge resulted in even this amount to get diverted to another village in the Lima panchayat. Continue reading The Virtues of Waiting Patiently: Arnav Das and Soumik Mukherjee
Seventeen Adivasi villagers of Samna in Orissa’s Narayanpatna block
claim that they were brutally assaulted in custody last week, an
allegation the police have denied.
According to the villagers, they were picked up on May 9, as part of a
joint operation conducted by the Orissa and Andhra Pradesh police
along the inter-State border, airlifted to a police station in Andhra
Pradesh and held in custody for three days before being released on
“Uniformed policemen surrounded our village on Sunday morning [May 9],
when we were leaving for the market,” said Nachika Jaddo, one of those
who were picked up. “Seventeen men, including two dokras [old men]
were rounded up, beaten up and then dragged to a spot 2 km away.”
Continue reading Adivasis allege torture in anti-Naxal operations