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    December 04, 2018

    AMNESTY INDIA PRESS RELEASE

    BENGALURU/NEW DELHI

    A police officer in Uttar Pradesh has become the latest victim of mob lynching and attacks by cow vigilantes. This attack is a consequence of the growing impunity that perpetrators of cow-related violence have in Uttar Pradesh, Amnesty India said today.

    On 3 December, police inspector Subodh Kumar Singh was shot dead after he reportedly tried to control mob violence in Bulandshahr, Uttar Pradesh after carcasses of 25 cows were found close to a police post. A post-mortem report confirmed that he died of bullet injuries. The mob also injured more than five policemen and burned down a police station. A local man was also killed during the violence.

    November 15, 2018
    DOWNLOAD THE PDF OF UA 194/18 HERE

    The government of India has targeted Amnesty India and Greenpeace India in a series of “raids” which appear to be politically motivated. The bank accounts of both organizations have been frozen, effectively stopping their work. This is the latest in the clampdown by Indian authorities to crush civil society in India. 

    On 25 October 2018, Amnesty India endured a 10-hour-long raid as a group of officers from the Enforcement Directorate, a financial investigation agency under the Ministry of Finance, entered the premises and locked the gates behind them. Some of the staff were ordered to not leave, shut their laptops and not use their mobile phones. Similar action was undertaken against Greenpeace India in early October. 

    November 15, 2018

    AMNESTY INDIA PRESS RELEASE
    BENGALURU/DELHI

    The latest leak of a dossier on Amnesty India by the Enforcement Directorate, a financial investigation agency under the Ministry of Finance, based on its ongoing investigations, indicates a deliberate attempt by the government to tarnish Amnesty India’s reputation. Amnesty India calls for an immediate end to this smear campaign and an independent inquiry into the selective leaks of information that are fueling this smear campaign.

    “In the three weeks since we were raided by the Enforcement Directorate, no formal charges have been filed against us. So, it is really shocking to see media coverage of what is alleged to be documents from the investigation. If the authorities believe that Amnesty India has committed an offence, they must prove it in a court of law. However, the Enforcement Directorate seems to be leaking selective information and conducting a media trial,” said Aakar Patel of Amnesty India

    October 26, 2018

    Amnesty India is the latest target of the Modi government’s assault on civil society. On Thursday,  the Enforcement Directorate, an agency that looks into financial crimes, raided the organization’s office and froze its bank accounts, effectively stopping its vital human rights work.

    Swift on the heels of its assault on Greenpeace India earlier this month, when the environmental group’s bank accounts were frozen, the Indian government is claiming violations of foreign funding regulations to shut down another prominent NGO.

    “The Enforcement Directorate’s raid on our office today shows how the authorities are now treating human rights organizations like criminal enterprises, using heavy-handed methods that are commonly found in repressive states. Our staff have been harassed and intimidated,” said Aakar Patel, Amnesty International India’s Executive Director.

    September 06, 2018

    The landmark ruling by India’s Supreme Court decriminalizing consensual same-sex relations is a historic step, which sends a message of hope not only to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) people, but to everyone fighting for justice and equality, Amnesty International India said today.

    “The judgment closes the door on a dark chapter of Indian history. It marks a new era of equality for millions of people in India. The remarkable victory today is a milestone in the three decade old struggle by the LGBTI community and their allies in India”, said Asmita Basu, Programmes Director, Amnesty International India.

    On 6 September, a five-judge bench of the Supreme Court decriminalized consensual same-sex relations between adults. The Court’s unanimous verdict has upheld the right to equality, privacy, dignity and freedom of expression of all people regardless of their sexual orientation. The apex court added that any discrimination on basis of sexual orientation is a violation of fundamental rights guaranteed by the Indian Constitution.

    July 30, 2018

    AI INDIA RELEASE  - BENGALURU/NEW DELHI

    Responding to the National Register of Citizens (NRC) list published today, Arijit Sen, Programmes Manager, Amnesty International India said:

    “Amnesty International India is concerned that the NRC process in Assam may render a significant number of people stateless. It is possible that the process will arbitrarily deprive people, who have lived in India for decades, of their nationality. We urge the government to extend the time period for appeals and to ensure that all appeals are processed in transparent and non-discriminatory manner. Care should be taken to ensure that families are not torn apart, and appropriate legal aid should be provided to those who are at risk of losing their nationality.”

    “The fate of those who may lose their nationality, as a consequence of this process, is unclear. India does not even have an agreement with other countries, particularly Bangladesh, on deportation. It is crucial that the government make public their plan for dealing with those at risk of being rendered stateless and ensure that their rights are not violated.”

    April 03, 2018

    Reacting to reports of the withdrawal of an executive order issued by the central government that allowed journalists’ accreditation to be suspended by non-government regulatory agencies if they were accused of disseminating ‘fake news’, Aakar Patel, Executive Director, Amnesty International India said,



    “The withdrawal of the Information and Broadcasting Ministry’s order is welcome. This appeared to be a brazen attempt to control the media under the façade of controlling ‘fake news’, and target critics of the government.



    “While intentionally misleading and deceitful reports are a real problem, the solution is not to crack down on press freedom. The government should instead take steps to promote a free, independent and diverse environment for the media.”



    “Several government spokesperson have been known to disseminate disinformation which they should know to be false, on social media and on television. This dangerous trend needs to stop.”



    February 22, 2018
    Amnesty International publishes State of the World’s Human Rights report for 2017 to 2018 “Last year our world was immersed in crises, with prominent leaders offering us a nightmarish vision of a society blinded by hatred and fear. This emboldened those who promote bigotry, but it inspired far more people to campaign for a more hopeful future,” says Salil Shetty, head of Amnesty International

    The world is reaping the terrifying consequences of hate-filled rhetoric that threatens to normalize massive discrimination against marginalized groups, Amnesty International warned today as it launched its annual assessment of human rights.

    Nevertheless, the organization found that a growing movement of both first-time and seasoned activists campaigning for social justice provides real hope of reversing the slide towards oppression.

    The report, The State of the World’s Human Rights, covers 159 countries and delivers the most comprehensive analysis of the state of human rights in the world today.

    February 15, 2018

    As Prime Minister Justin Trudeau prepares for an official visit to India, Amnesty International has issued Open Letters to both Trudeau and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi calling on the leaders to raise pressing human rights concerns in India, Canada, and on the world stage.  The Open Letters note the strong linkages between the two countries, and call on both leaders to recognize that progress toward the enjoyment of human rights for all must be at the core of our bilateral relationship. Substantive engagement on human rights during Prime Minister Trudeau’s visit offers an opportunity to demonstrate that commitment.

    November 10, 2017

    The arrest and detention of Dalit rights activist Chandrasekhar Azad under the National Security Act a day after he was granted bail is a brazen attempt to sidestep human rights safeguards in the ordinary criminal justice system, Amnesty International India said today.

    Chandrasekhar Azad was arrested by the Uttar Pradesh state police under the National Security Act (NSA) on 3 November, a day after he was granted bail by the Allahabad High Court after four months in jail. Newspaper reports had quoted the court stating that the cases against Chandrasekhar Azad appeared to have been politically motivated. Under the NSA, he is at risk of being detained for up to 12 months without charge or trial.

    October 31, 2017

    The impunity enjoyed by the perpetrators of the 1984 Sikh massacre must end immediately and authorities should ensure that all those responsible, including those with command responsibility, are brought to justice, Amnesty International India reiterated today in a new briefing, “Chauraasi Ki Nainsaafi: The continuing injustice for the 1984 Sikh massacre”.

    Marking the 33rd anniversary of the 1984 carnage, the briefing gives a glimpse into the lives of the families of 15 victims and survivors, and their struggle for justice for over three decades.

    “It is shameful that thousands of victims and survivors are still waiting for justice. If the government wants to revive the faith of these people in the justice system, it must end the impunity around the massacre and bring closure to those who have suffered,” said Asmita Basu, Programmes Director at Amnesty International India.

    September 06, 2017

    The killing of journalist Gauri Lankesh by gunmen outside her residence in Bengaluru on Tuesday night raises alarms about the state of freedom of expression in the country, said Amnesty International India today.

    “Gauri Lankesh was never afraid of speaking truth to power. Her assassination must be thoroughly investigated and the perpetrators brought to justice,” said Asmita Basu, Programmes Director at Amnesty International India. “The police must investigate whether she was killed because of her journalism.”

    55-year-old Gauri Lankesh was the editor of Gauri Lankesh Patrike, a Kannada weekly. She was widely regarded as an independent and outspoken journalist and activist, and a fierce critic of hardline Hindu groups in Karnataka.

    Speaking to journalists, the Bangalore City Police Commissioner said unidentified men shot Gauri Lankesh from close range, and three bullets hit her on the neck and chest.

    “Critical journalists and activists have increasingly faced threats and attacks across India in recent years. State governments must act to protect those whose voices of dissent are being silenced,” said Asmita Basu.

    August 10, 2017

    Responding to the arrest of Medha Patkar, of the Narmada Bachao Andolan (NBA), Asmita Basu, Programmes Director at Amnesty International India said:

    "The right to protest peacefully and without arms is a fundamental right in India. The Madhya Pradesh government must immediately release Medha Patkar and 11 others who were arrested on 9 August when they were on their way to meet people protesting against their displacement by the Sardar Sarovar Project".

    Medha Patkar, a former commissioner on the World Commission of Dams, along with others, joined the evictees from the Sardar Sarovar dam, to stage an indefinite fast demanding the satisfactory rehabilitation of the evictees. According to Patkar, there are no basic amenities, including water, for evictees in the rehabilitation sites. Patkar, along with 11 others, were forcibly removed from the protest site on 7 August and then admitted in different hospitals. After being discharged from hospital, they were arrested by the Madhya Pradesh Police on charges of kidnapping, criminal intimidation, rioting and assaulting a public servant.

    May 23, 2017

    The Indian Army’s decision to present an award to a soldier suspected of having a man tied to a moving military jeep in Jammu and Kashmir last month gives the impression that it condones human rights abuses, Amnesty International India said today.

    “Rewarding an officer who is under investigation for a human rights violation suggests that the Army seems to be willing to not just overlook, but actually valorise an act of cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment amounting to torture,” said Aakar Patel, Executive Director at Amnesty International India.

    March 29, 2017

    Uttar Pradesh authorities must bring to justice those responsible for recent racist attacks against black African students and ensure the students’ safety, said Amnesty International India today.

    “The recent attacks in Uttar Pradesh show how black people in India - particularly African students - continue to face racist discrimination and violence. Many of those injured were targeted merely because of the colour of their skin. These are hate crimes, and authorities need to ensure that those responsible are punished,” said Makepeace Sitlhou, Campaigner at Amnesty International India.

    Several black African students have been attacked in a series of hate crimes in Greater Noida over the last three days. On Wednesday, a Kenyan woman was pulled out of a taxicab and beaten in Greater Noida. On 27 March, four Nigerian men were beaten up by locals holding a protest march demanding justice for a 17-year-old who had died two days earlier from a suspected drug overdose. The boy’s family had accused their five Nigerian neighbours of murder and demanded their arrest. The men were arrested, and later released due to lack of evidence.

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