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Published November 2013
Guilt by Association: UAPA
Cases from Madhya Pradesh
By Jamia Teachers' Solidarity
75 Large format pages p/b
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New Delhi: Jamia Teachers’ Solidarity Association (JTSA), a Delhi
based civil and democratic rights group released its latest report on November 7th
2013 , at Jamia Millia Islamia, New Delhi, in a well attended meeting. The
report was released by Dr. Binayak Sen, Noted Activist and National
Vice-President of PUCL; Mr. Wajahat Habibullah, Chairperson, National Commission
for Minorities; Senior Advocates Ashok Agrawal and Rebecca John. Here is a
detailed report on it, sent to us by JTSA.
The programme began with introductory remarks by Sanghamitra Misra, the Joint
Secretary of JTSA. She reminded the audience of the context in which JTSA which
was formed in the aftermath of the Batla House encounter. This is the fifth year
of JTSA’s fight for justice. The present report on UAPA cases in Madhya Pradesh
is the third in the series on terror cases that JTSA has brought out – the first
being the report on the SIMI trial in Jaipur, followed by the widely acclaimed
Framed Damned, Acquitted. The JTSA announced its plan to undertake an All India
survey on UAPA cases.
The report Guilt by Association was introduced by the president of
JTSA, Manisha Sethi. She said that idea for the report took root in 2011 when a
JTSA team visited Madhya Pradesh following the arrest of a number of Muslim
youth in Khandwa. When the team visited the families of the accused, it
discovered an altogether different version, putting in serious doubt the police
claims. The men had actually been apprehended days prior to their said arrest
and many family members had in fact filed writs of habeas corpus in local
courts, asking for them to be produced before the magistrate. She said that
usually when one talks of fabricated cases, one thinks of Malegaon or Mecca
Masjid which are now well documented. But the story of Madhya Pradesh remains an
untold one. Madhya Pradesh is one such story, which has passed unnoticed,
Ashok Agrawal, Advocate and long time campaigner for civil rights, spoke
next. He pointed out the irony of representing SIMI in the UAPA tribunal.
Though, he is contesting the ban on SIMI, he said, “I am not a lawyer since SIMI
does not exist”. The UAPA, he reminded, has a history of 100 years, first
brought by the British as a criminal law amendment act. When POTA was repealed,
the UAPA was amended. UAPA made membership punishable. I have stressed that we
need to find concrete proof of membership, or unlawful activity, but all the
proof they have is police confessions. A large proportion of material that was
used as the basis to ban SIMI was confessions made to the police. Many of the
police confession cannot be used in the trials … but the . The same confessions,
which cannot be admitted as evidence in court were however used by the Cabinet
Committee on Security to extend the ban on the organization. Each of the
tribunals, very high powered ones, headed by justices of the Delhi High court,
have relied again and again on these confessions –patently illegal material to
continue the ban.
On 27th September 2001—when the first ban on SIMI was
imposed—within a week, 300 cases were registered across India on flimsy grounds.
These included allegation such as screaming slogans or putting up slogans. These
cases are very similar, he said, to what was happening in Punjab of the 1980s.
Mr. Wajahat Habibullah, chairperson, National Minorities Commission,
appreciating the report, said that it would be valuable to the NCM’s efforts in
seeking a review of this unjust law. He said that he requested the board of
Governors of NHRC, of which he is an ex officio member, to ask the government
for a review of UAPA. UAPA is, he said, an unsound law, which gives excessive
powers to the police. He also decried the appalling lack of prosecution of
police officers, proven to have participated in framing of cases. In particular,
he spoke of the Mecca Masjid Case. While the lives of those who are falsely
framed are destroyed, the perpetrators of these fabrications, receive promotions
Dr Binayak Sen while congratulating the JTSA for bringing out this report,
remarked that the previous report was also a landmark in the analysis of such
cases and a great resource for activists. While this present report focuses on
SIMI cases, Sen drew attention to the fact that this is but one example of the
targeting of innocent people, and the fabrication of cases by police in other
parts of the country. He particularly mentioned the example of Chhatisgarh,
where Adivasis have been framed as Maoists in many cases.
Dr. Sen, himself, convicted under UAPA, recounted his own experience of how a
letter purportedly from a Maoist commander to him was presented before the Court
even though there was no evidence that it was seized from his house. This
document did not have either Sen’s or the Investigating Officer’s signature on
it. When this was questioned in Court, the prosecution’s lawyer argued that it
was ‘stuck’ to the other documents! Sen also stated that the documents allegedly
taken from his house were taken out in an unsealed cover, violating all codes of
The last speaker of the programme was Rebecca John, a prominent Senior
Advocate of the Delhi High Court who has successfully taken up many cases of
civil rights violation under the UAPA. Ms. John emphasized the fact that the
judiciary has not done enough to release reign in the prosecuting agencies and
to ensure just and fair trials. She insisted that evidence must be scrutinized
at every stage of the trial so that innocents are not incarcerated for long
periods. Acquittals after 15 years mean little to those who have lost their
lives behind bars. Among other cases, Rebecca John detailed the particular case
of Mohd Rafiq, who had been picked up by the Delhi Police in the 2005 Diwali
blasts case. In his particular case, the Court has refused to take cognizance of
the fact that the chargesheet filed by the Delhi Police in 2006 did not have the
attendance record of Rafiq in Kashmir University, where he was a student. The
defence case is that he was present in class on the day the police alleges he
had executed the bomb blasts. The defence has also submitted an affidavit by the
then Registrar stating that Rafiq was in fact present in the University on the
The programme ended with the screening of K.P. Sasi’s film ‘Fabricated’, on
the various cases of frame ups across the country.
3 days ago - The association
released a 75-page document, "Guilt By Association: UAPA
cases from Madhya Pradesh," and claimed that across the country ...
4 days ago - The present report on
UAPA cases in Madhya Pradesh is the third in the ...
The report Guilt by Association was introduced by the president
Akash's tragic story is part of a new report, Guilt
by Association: UAPA cases in Madhya Pradesh,
brought out by the Jamia Teachers' Solidarity Association ...
JAMIA TEACHERS' SOLIDARITY ASSOCIATION. Invites you to
the release of its report. Guilt by Association: UAPA Cases
from Madhya Pradesh. Speakers:.
Nov 5, 2013 - hastakshep provide
the best news and live news and describe all the news which is updated all
over the world.
5 days ago - The association,
which released a 75-page document, “Guilt by Association:
UAPA Cases from Madhya Pradesh”, also claimed that several ...
5 days ago - Jamai Millia Islamia,
New Delhi, India, Jamia Teachers Solidarity Association invites you to the
Release of “Guilt By Association: UAPA Cases ...
4 days ago - Released recently at
the varsity by Binayak Sen, the report titled “Guilt By Association:
UAPA Cases in Madhya Pradesh” documents a large ...
7 days ago - ... cases
of 'Guilt by Association' of arbitrary detentions under the
draconian Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA)
from Madhya Pradesh ...
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