Governance By Denial – Interim Fact Finding report on Ejipura

March 17, 2013 by · Comments Off on Governance By Denial – Interim Fact Finding report on Ejipura
Filed under: Human Rights, Press Releases, Report, Uncategorized, Urban Poverty 

Download full Interim report

Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP), responsible for providing infrastructure and services in the Greater Bangalore Metropolitan area, bulldozed 1,512 homes (comprised of 42 blocks), and evicted over 5,000 slum dwellers living in tin sheds in the economically weaker section (EWS) quarters in Koramangala (near Ejipura), Bangalore, from 18-21 January, 2013. The four-day demolition drive a^ected around 1,200 women and 2,000 children, and rendered thousands homeless. It was the largest eviction the city of Bangalore has witnessed in recent years.

Given reports of alleged violations of the human rights of the residents of Koramangala (Ejipura), People’s Union for Civil Liberties (PUCL – Karnataka) and Housing and Land Rights Network (HLRN – Delhi) decided to undertake a two-day fact-finding visit (21–22 February 2013) to investigate the incidence of forced eviction in Koramangala (Ejipura) and its aftermath. The aim of the mission was to:
a) Ascertain if any human rights violations occurred before, during and after the eviction, particularly of women and children;

b) Understand the socio-political economy of Bangalore’s urbanisation process and development; and,

c) Assess the response of the state and civil society.

Read the full interim –>  Governance By Denial

Indian State and the Art of Fabricating False Cases Convention on July 30, 2011 in Bangalore.

July 27, 2011 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Uncategorized 

Two spectres are haunting the civil society in India – the spectres of communalism and globalisation.As a part this invasion on people, minorities are attacked as it happened in Gujarat or Kandhamal and many other places in the recent past. Multinationals, the World Bank, ADB, IMF and other international organisations decide on the policies of the Indian Government today. Land, forests, hills, lakes, rivers and seas are sold to the corporates. Prices are rising and the corruption level has reached the peak as never before, due to such policies.

While many groups and people’s movements are resisting both these tendencies, the Indian State is using its executive machinery in a brutal way to suppress the dissent. Many innocent people are criminalised, branded and made to suffer for long time. Dr. Binayak Sen is the most well known personality in this category of fabricated cases by the Indian State. Due to active resistance of many groups and concerned individuals all over the country and abroad, he is not only out of jail today, but also absorbed by the Planning Commission. However, there are hundreds of similar such fabricated cases in Chattisgarh itself. Many innocent adivasis are languishing behind the bars in Chattisgarh. While POTA seems to be no more, many innocent muslims are still in jail in Gujarat for no crime. The lesson from Kandhamal is also no different.
Moreover, the growing tendency of the Indian state is to frame false cases on those who are organising and leading peopole’s movements in this country. Many false cases are framed on those who are resisting POSCO. Similar false cases are framed on activists who respond on a number of other issues. When evidences are missing for their guilt, efforts are being made to create false evidences. The real issue is that when they are released without evidences, a part of their lives would already be over. The mainstream press, predominantly follow the version of the police, politicians and the bureaucracy in all these cases. When genuine investigative reports are being made by some journalists, attempts are being made to criminalise them also.

It is time that the civil society in this country wakes up against this process and say `No’ to the process of fabricating cases by the Indian State. For unless, we say `No’ to this process, the vested interests will silence all dissent in this country, threatening the very pillars of Indian democracy.
Therefore, over 20 organisations in Bangalore have come forward to organise a one-day Convention on the `Indian State and the Art of Fabricating False Cases’. We request you to participate, support, mobilise and contribute to this process.

Venue: NGO Hall, Cubbon Park, BangaloreDate: July 30, 2011Time: 9.30 am to 6.30 pm
Programme:

9.30 am – Inauguration

First session: False charges on people’s movements: Globalisation, Development and People’s Movements
Chairperson: Leo Saldanha, Environment Support Group
Speakers:
Prafulla Samantarai (Well known activist/intellectual from Orissa)
Prashant Paikray (Official Spokesperson, Anti-Posco Movement, Orissa)
Swami Vishua Bhadrananda Shakti Bhodi (Director, Alathoor Siddha Ashramam/Editor, Ethir Disha Magazine)

Second session: Communalism and Branding
Chairperson: Gauri Lankesh, Editor, Lankesh Patrike
Speakers:
K.L. Ashok (State Secretary, Karnataka, Communal Harmony Forum, A coalition of over 90 organisations
Teesta Setalvad (Well known anti-communal activist, writer and editor of Communalism Combat)
Fr. Ajay Singh (The main initiative from Kandhamal for raising the Kandamal communal issue at a national level)
Dr. K. Muhamed Najeeb (Solidarity Youth Movement)

Lunch Break: 1. 15 pm to 2 pm

Third Session: 2 pm War on Terror or War on People?
Speakers:
Sebastian Paul (Former Member of Parliament)
U.S. Kumar (Mangalore Human Rights Forum)
Sherif Kottapurath (Former CTO of Sun Microsystems)
Bhasurendrababu (Media Critic/Political Observer)

Fourth Session: Approaches of the Indian State, Media and Civil Society Responses:

Speakers:
S.A.R. Gilani (Professor, Delhi University)
Kavita Srivastava (General Secretary, PUCL)
Satya Sagar (Journalist/Activist)

Organised By:
Environment Support Group, PDF, PUCL, Pedestrian Pictures, SICHREM, Karnataka Vidhyarthi Sangha, Samanatha Mahila Vedike, Janasakti, Karnataka Komu Souharda Vedike, Indian Social Institute, Students Christian Movement, New Socialist Alternative, Department of Women’s Studies – UTC, Concern, Moving Republic, Stree Jagruti Samiti,Solidarity Youth Movement, Visual Search, Bharatiya Muslim Mahila Andolan, Ambedkar Pilosophy Foundation, Swabhimani Dalit Sangha, INSAF, Human Rights Law Network and Open Space.

[Press Statement] Visit by PUCL-Bangalore to POSCO Affected Areas in Odisha 22-24 July, 2011

July 27, 2011 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Uncategorized 

A five member team of PUCL Bangalore visited the POSCO project villages of Govindpur, Dhinkia and Patana in Jagatsinghpur district of Odisha between July 22-24, 2011on a solidarity visit with people’s struggle against the POSCO project and to probe large-scale forced acquisition of lands by the State for the proposed POSCO steel plant in the region. The team found a truly strong and democratic people’s movement convinced of their legitimate rights and firmly resolved not to give up their lands or livelihoods for the benefit of either a foreign company or an arguably larger common good for the people of the State. The movement is continuing to gain momentum as villagers from different hamlets take turns to safeguard their lands from attempts to destroy their betel plantations. Most people we spoke to were determined not to give up their lands, even at the cost of their lives.

Participation of people’s organizations from all over the country is adding strength to the local resolve even as the movement is facing increasing threats from the state which is moving into the area by a massive clearance of surrounding forest lands. The large majority of these villages are not ready to leave the forest lands on which they have been cultivating betel vines and cashew for centuries because it will destroy their livelihoods and consequently their very existence.

On July 24th we found five vans and four jeeps filled with armed police stationed in Gadakujang near Mahaveer Chowk purportedly for maintaining the law and order situation in the area. The DySP, Jagatsinghpur and Tahsildar Kailash Chandra of Tirutwar refused to divulge any further information. We observed large scale tree clearance under strong and armed paramilitary supervision. In later conversations with the DC and the SP, we gathered that the police presence was to facilitate the clearance of forest land by IDCO. We were also informed by the DC that it was not necessary for the district administration to either consult or obtain authorization from the village panchayats since they were acting under the mandate given to the police by the constitution. The SP also maintained that the police would continue assisting the tree clearance operation till all the POSCO lands were cleared. In other words, this clearing operation was being conducted in complete disregard of the wishes of the local communities.

The team also visited the transit camp set up by POSCO where the so-called pro-POSCO families from Dhinkia and Patana are housed. They all seemed to suggest that POSCO will bring complete ruin to these villages in spite of their being labeled as ‘Pro-POSCO’. We spoke to Praful Mohanti, the spokesperson for the community in the transit camp. We found the displaced people are living under inhuman conditions. They have suffered for the last four years in overcrowded, unhygienic living conditions with only Rs20 per person per day for sustaining life. They said that their children are unable to attend school and no medical facilities are available to them. Most people there were unemployed and showed a keen interest in returning to their homes and previous lifestyles. We feel that people in this transit camp are victims of the same State-Corporate nexus that is breaking up of communities in this area, and leading to loss of homes, lands, and livelihoods.

PUCL strongly condemns the State of Odisha for its policies that serve the financial interests of corporations. Such policies deliberately harm people’s interests and their fundamental right to pursue lives of liberty and dignity. PUCL condemns the use of armed police for promoting corporate interests in complete disregard of the democratically voiced wishes and interests and legitimate rights of the people of the area. We demand an immediate withdrawal of all armed personnel and a halt to all human rights violations in the area. We call for an immediate halt to the cutting down of thousands of trees which are vital to the local ecology and the economic independence of the people of this region. PUCL also demands that the Odisha government to listen to the democratic voices of the villagers and hence uphold the democratic values of this nation.

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A Discussion Meeting on the Story of POSCO Fiasco

June 17, 2011 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Meetings and Events 

A Discussion Meeting on the Story of POSCO Fiasco
Tales of Betrayal, treachery and subversion: Lessons for citizens from the controversy over the biggest steel plant in India

Sunday, June 19 · 5:00pm – 8:00pm
Venue: ISI Benson Town, Bangalore

By

Dr. V. Suresh, one of the majority MoEF committee members on the POSCO project who will share his experiences and insights

and

Leo Saldanha of ESG, who has jointly authored a comprehensive report on POSCO, will reflect on the issue and cull out concerns for citizens about industrial projects all over India.

We are seeking widest participation from diverse organisations working at the grassroots level on a variety of rights’ issues. There is no registration fee. We invite interested people who can commit for the duration of the entire day. All effort will be made to ensure full translation and answer relevant questions that arise directly from field experiences. Please register at the earliest as the participation in the workshop is limites. No need for registeration for Posco discussion. It is open to all

Defending Rights, Expanding Freedoms! Why Citizens Should Know Constitutional and Criminal Law

June 17, 2011 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Meetings and Events 

Defending Rights, Expanding Freedoms! Why Citizens Should Know Constitutional and Criminal Law

A Workshop by V Suresh, Lawyer, Activist, PUCL National Secretary

Sunday, June 19 · 9:00am – 4:30pm
Venue: ISI Benson Town, Bangalore

This one day workshop is being offered by PUCL to introduce citizens to the laws. The approach is to learn the essential principles and provisions of law so that we can use the law as a sword (to expand our rights) and as a shield (to protect our rights and freedoms). The emphasis is on equipping citizens with enough knowledge about the working of such laws to deal with ordinary day-to-day situations as also with special incidents. Using experiential learning methods, the workshop will focus on actual experiences to help participants gain a more nuanced understanding of the law; in the ultimate analysis knowledge of laws are required not only when facing criminal action but also when demanding new rights and freedoms; our actions to reclaim democracy will gain greater depth and quality when we understand the essence of constitutional and criminal laws.

The workshop is open to all those who cherish freedom and democracy!! All we need is your full attention and interest. There is however a limitation on numbers of participants. We request only those who can spend a full day during the workshop to apply.

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THE HORRIFYING HUMAN TRAGEDY- Mangalore SEZ

April 2, 2011 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Human Rights, Report 

THE HORRIFYING HUMAN TRAGEDY CALLED MANGALORE SEZ.

DEATH, DESTRUCTION AND RAPE OF THE PLANET
EXTRACTED FROM (A REPORT ON THE ATTACKS ON MINORITIES AND THEIR PLACES OF WORSHIP IN KARNATAKA) Click here for report

AN EDITOR IN CHAINS

April 2, 2011 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Human Rights, Report 

AN EDITOR IN CHAINS – HIS MIRACULOUS SURVIVAL THE SEETHARAM EPISODE

EXTRACTED FROM (A REPORT ON THE ATTACKS ON MINORITIES AND THEIR PLACES OF WORSHIP IN KARNATAKA) Click here for the document

POLICE ATROCITIES IN THE KARAVALI AREA- Report

April 2, 2011 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Human Rights, Report 

POLICE ATROCITIES IN THE KARAVALI AREA COUPLED WITH FAILURE OF THE JUDICIARY IN PROTECTING CITIZENS RIGHTS & LIBERTIES  Click Here for the document

Fact finding reports and SHRC/NHRC Cases – Dakshina Kannada

April 2, 2011 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Human Rights, Report 

FACT – FINDING REPORTS and NHRC & SHRC CASES and RELATED CORRESPONDENCE VOLUME – I

PUCL Dakshina Kannada . Click here for the document

Just a little collateral damage

March 22, 2011 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Human Rights, Report 

In the month of November 2010, an All-India Fact Finding Team, comprising of representatives of PUCL Chhattisgarh, Campaign for Justice and Peace Chennai, PUCL Karnataka (Bangalore Chapter), Peoples Union for Democratic Rights Delhi, and Human Rights Law Network investigated some instances of encounters in Rajnandgaon, Durg and Mahasamund districts of Chhattisgarh and on the Maharashtra-Chhattisgarh border.

The preliminary report of the investigation is available here Just a little collateral damage.

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