By Muslim Mirror Staff
As many as 260 human rights activists, intellectuals, journalists, artists and community leaders from various parts of the world have strongly condemned the arrest of Teesta Setalvad, R.B. Sreekumar and Sanjiv Bhatt as well as fact-checking journalist Mohammed Zubair in India. They called on the country’s government to release them with immediate effects.
They criticised the Supreme Court in connection with the arrest of Setalvad and Sreekumar. They said the top court made “totally unwarranted” observations against those who fought a long legal battle to seek justice in connection with the Gujarat riots.
Last week, the Supreme Court had rejected a plea seeking probe against Prime Minister Narendra Modi and others over the riots. It said that there was “far-fetched” attempt to keep the pot boiling. It further said, “The court observed that “all those involved in such abuse of process, need to be in the dock and proceeded with in accordance with law.”
In a statement, the signatories slammed the government over a crackdown on free speech. “What the present government is doing is “Governance by Fear” in its rawest form,” the statement said.
“On the anniversary of the Emergency, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah have the habit of issuing statements condemning the Emergency as a dark chapter in the history of independent India, one imposed to quell dissent and free voice. But both of them are doing much worse now, and the Setalvad case is a typical example,” the statement added.
The statement was initiated by newly launched platform, Solidarity for the Prisoners of Conscience in India, and was signed by a total 260 individuals.
Shabnam Hashmi, Javed Anand, Cedric Prakash, John Dayal, Shaik Ubaid, Angana Chatterji are among the signatories who initiated the movement.