Chennai : Several human rights organisations of Tamil Nadu led by the Peoples Union for Civil Liberties (PUCL) and some other NGOs continued their protests against the arrest of Teesta Setalvad and retired Director General of Police (DGP) R.B. Sreekumar by the Gujarat Police.
Protests were held in Chennai, Tiruchi, Madurai, Coimbatore, Dindigul, Salem and other major towns of Tamil Nadu.
PUCL national general secretary, V. Suresh told the mediapersons that the state has used the observations made in the Supreme Court judgment ‘falsely and was vindictively prosecuting those who were fighting against human rights violations’.
The duo was arrested by the Gujarat Police after the Supreme Court upheld the clean chit to Prime Minister Narendra Modi in the 2002 Gujarat riots case.
The Supreme Court had dismissed a petition filed by Zakia Jafri calling for an investigation into the criminal conspiracy that resulted in communal violence and killings in 2002 after the Godhra train burning incident in which many Kar Sevaks were killed.
Senior advocate of the Madras High court R. Vaigai, while participating in a protest march, said that there was a direct attack against the social activists by the state. He said that such arrests could happen to anyone who was assisting victims seeking justice.
The PUCL office-bearers told the mediapersons that they would conduct protest marches across the state and corner meetings to apprise the people of the gross human rights violations taking place in the country.
The office-bearers of the civil liberties organisation said the Gujarat government was playing politics of vindictiveness against the social activists and added that the human rights organisations of Tamil Nadu will conduct protests by whatever means they could do.
Pughal, an NGO working against Human rights violations in Salem and Erode, also staged protests against the arrest of Teesta and Sreekumar.
K.R. Senthil, Chief Coordinator of the organisation while speaking to IANS said, “The state is breathing heavily on the human rights activists and this is unbecoming of a democratic country like India. The government must revoke the arrest drama against Teesta and Sreekumar Sir and release them with immediate effect.”— IANS