ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Anti-democratic Measures

The following is an open letter addressed to the home minister, government of Maharashtra, the director general of police, Maharashtra, the commissioner of police, Nagpur, the chairperson, National Human Rights Commission, and the chairperson, Maharashtra State Human Rights Commission:

We, the undersigned, are shocked at the statement of the Maharashtra Police (reported in the Hindustan Times of May 16, 2007) that they “would not hesitate to arrest anyone who tried to whip up support for alleged Naxalite Arun Ferreira”. Note that this has come in the context of the request of his friends that he be transferred to judicial custody, be accorded the rights of a political prisoner, and be given a medical examination conducted by independent doctors. These are entirely legitimate demands and we support them for Ferreira, as well as for the three co-accused, whose names have been reported as Ashok Satya Reddy, Dhanendra Bhurale and Naresh Bansod. If the Maharashtra Police has not broken the law and tortured Ferreira and his three co-accused, it would have no reason to reject these demands, even less to threaten with arrest those who make them. Such threats are blatantly illegal and a violation of the freedom of expression.

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