A public hearing of victims of fabricated cases here accused the police and investigation agencies of orchestrating “a systematic campaign to brutalize citizens” by labeling them as “being involved in terrorism”.
The two-day hearing was organised by more than 30 civil rights organisations from across the country.
A large number of persons and families affected by the state atrocities participated in the hearing. A jury comprising Justice Rajinder Sachar, Dr Ram Puniyani, Dr Binayak Sen and journalists Saba Naqvi and Ajit Shahi, heard their depositions.
Giving details of the recommendations, Dr Sen said that the possibility of establishing a legal support mechanism for the victims of fabricated cases should be explored so that victims may be supported in pursuing their legal defence.
Interim recommendations issued by the jury recommended that the government be pressured to bring action against police officers who are established to have forged evidences and fabricated such cases of terrorism and sedition against innocent citizens.
On the second day of hearing depositions, Suresh Velamanoor from the Dalit Human Rights Movement (DHRM) spoke about how the Kerala police branded his organisation as a terrorist outfit.
Earlier Seema Azad, a rights activist who was arrested on February 6, 2010 by the Uttar Pradesh ATS with her husband on the charges of Maoist activities, said that during investigations the police did not ask her a single question related to Maoists. “Their only concern was why I write for Muslims, Dalits and tribals,” she added.
KK Shahina, a journalist who worked with Tehelka magazine and was booked under sedition charges by the Bangalore police, explained that how she was targeted by the police for her reporting job. “We should not consider ourselves as the victims but as the agent of change,” she said.
Abhay Sahoo of Posco Prathirodh Sangram Samiti (PPSS), an anti-Posco struggle in Odisha, explained that how several false cases have been filed against local people who are fighting against the project. Sahoo himself spent 19 months in jail and has more than 50 cases against him.
Dr Sunilam Mishra, former MLA and the leader of the Kisan Sangharsh Samiti, explained the situation of farmers and Dalits in Madhya Pradesh. The MP government has lodged 66 false cases against Dr. Sunilam and other farmers in one single incident of police firing in Multai, he said.