"if you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen
the side of the oppressor." - Desmond Tutu.

Rally for jailed Indian scholars held in Canada Featured

Picture by Vivek Sharma Picture by Vivek Sharma

 

Close to the birthday of George Orwell and the 46th anniversary of Emergency in the world’s so called largest democracy, activists came together in Surrey on Sunday, June 27, to raise their voices against the incarceration of thinkers by the Indian authorities.

Organized by Radical Desi publications, the rally was held right outside the Indian Visa and Passport Application Center. The participants carried placards with pictures of jailed scholars who are being detained under trumped up charges for merely questioning the power and standing up for the poor and marginalized. Among them are former Delhi University Prof. G.N. Saibaba, who is ninety percent disabled below the waist; towering columnist and author Anand Teltumbde, who is the grandson-in-law of Dr. B.R.Ambedkar, an architect of the Indian constitution; elderly revolutionary poet Varavara Rao; and renowned human rights lawyer Sudha Bhardwaj. The health of Saibaba, who is suffering with multiple ailments, continues to deteriorate. 

Attacks on religious minorities and political dissidents have grown under the current right wing Hindu nationalist regime. This is despite the fact that the present Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, had disguised himself as a Sikh to go into hiding during the emergency and press censorship imposed by the then Congress government on June 25, 1975. Modi is accused of repeating the history through an undeclared emergency and throwing his critics in jail. 

Incidentally, June 25 is also the birthday of George Orwell, who was born in British India. Orwell made a prophecy about a totalitarian regime in his famous novel 1984. The actions of successive governments in New Delhi have proved his imagination right. 

A moment of silence was observed at the beginning of the rally in memory of two journalists, Jarnail Singh and Raj Kumar Keswani, who died last month due to COVID 19 complications. While Singh kept fighting to make the Indian government accountable for the Sikh Genocide, Keswani has been trying to expose Indian officials for shielding those involved in the gas leak at a pesticide plant in Bhopal. Both the tragedies rocked India in 1984, leaving thousands of people dead . Those complicit at the highest level of the government remain unpunished for all these years. 

The speakers unanimously demanded the scrapping of draconian laws under which the journalists and scholars are being targeted, and sought the unconditional release of political prisoners. They also condemned the growing foreign interference from Indian diplomats in Canada, and attempts to silence activists and media outlets daring to challenge the policies of the government in New Delhi. Those who spoke on the occasion included Telugu Church leader John Yajala, prominent Sikh activist Dupinder Kaur Saran, anti-racism and social justice educator Susan Ruzic, and cofounder of Radical Desi Gurpreet Singh. Ruzic was presented at the event with a Radical Desi medal of courage for standing up for Saibaba and all scholars at risk in India and elsewheret. Saran presented her the medal on behalf of Radical Desi. 

Those in attendance also raised slogans against black laws and in support of the freedom of Saibaba and others.  

*** 

Rate this item
(0 votes)
Super User

Selfies labore, leggings cupidatat sunt taxidermy umami fanny pack typewriter hoodie art party voluptate. Listicle meditation paleo, drinking vinegar sint direct trade.

www.themewinter.com

Leave a comment

Make sure you enter all the required information, indicated by an asterisk (*). HTML code is not allowed.

Latest Tweets

@imOKcozImJK don't be shocked if we scream about BTS in your DMs
@NhatHoangRBLX on our way to wrestling Twitter
@djarinculture first is the worst second is the best third is the one with the treasure chest
@bre_naa following you because you're extraordinary
Follow Twitter on Twitter

Post Gallery

Indigenous activist Cecilia Point and former Vancouver Park Board Commissioner Niki Sharma honoured at annual anti racism event in Surrey

Chuck Puchmayr honoured for bringing a motion against CAA

Historical heroes and robot dinosaurs: New games on our radar in April

Asia's best restaurant has a frustratingly confusing menu of only 17 emojis

TG G6 will have dual 13-megapixel cameras on the back

The Black Prince brings out last Sikh emperor's resistance to British occupation

KJerry's will sell food cream that tastes like your favorite video

Hynopedia helps female travelers find health care in Maldivs

Netcix cuts out the chill with an integrated personal trainer on running