Rape, Murder and Looting in Mewat: The Night of August 24 th 2016
A team of members from Women Against Sexual Violence and State Repression went on a fact finding visit to the village of Dingerheri in Nuh district of the Mewat region of Haryana (bordering Rajasthan) on the 21 st September 2016. According to very sparse news reports that only trickled in around mid September, a horrific attack had taken place in the dead of night in the outskirts of this village. A couple was murdered, their house looted, two young women gangraped, and several other members seriously injured while they were sleeping. They were all Muslim. The case was to be handed over to the CBI.
The SDM Tamnar, a representative of the District Administration of Raigarh district, openly issued vituperative and abusive threats to intimidate and harass villagers engaged in a peaceful anti-mining protest, and in particular, targetted Rinchin, a WSS member and a village organizer who has been living with these villagers for the past three years.
Chhattisgarh has long been a battleground where the state, in collusion with corporate capital, is waging a war against Adivasis who are resisting the model of “development” – based on brutal extraction and explotation of natural resources- that is being forced on them, in flagrant violation of the laws of the land and Constitutional rights.
Challenging State Impunity
A PIL on Extra-Judicial Killings in Bijapur, Chhattisgarh
Even as the Bastar police celebrate their “success” in having killed over a hundred alleged Naxalites this year, a Public Interest Litigation challenging the spate of encounters in Bijapur has been filed before the Chhattisgarh High Court in Bilaspur. The petitioners are two young women from Korcholi with extra-ordinary grit and determination –Suneeta Pottam (19 years old).and Munni Pottam (18 years old), who have been supported in this effort by a national women’s organization, the WSS (wssnet.org) as the third petitioner.
(The Petitioners, Suneeta Pottam and Munni Pottam, with a copy of their petition, in their lawyer’s office) Continue reading
“My struggle will continue until AFSPA is struck down” said Irom Sharmila Chanu, the poet and activist from Manipur whose 16-year long hunger strike against the Armed Forces Special Powers Act has made her a global symbol of non-violent resistance. Sharmila was speaking at a press conference organised by the “Stand With Irom Sharmila: Repeal AFSPA” Campaign, a global campaign endorsed by nearly 1000 women – from pioneers of global women’s movements to grassroot activists who have dedicated their lives to the struggle for women’s rights and freedoms.
In yet another instance of police brutality, a young man in Palnar, Bijapur, Chhattisgarh was killed and tied to a tree. Palnar is just a few kilometers from Korcholi, where Sukku Kunjam was killed and a young mother was raped in November and January respectively. A combined team of WSS and Peoples Union for Civil Liberties (PUCL) investigated the incident. A copy of the report detailing their findings can be found here.
Visit of Natasha Rather and Ifrah Butt, co-authors of ‘Do you remember Kunan Poshpora’ to Kolkata during July 11 to 13, 2016
WSS, West Bengal arranged for the visit of Natasha Rather and Ifrah Butt, co-authors of Do you remember Kunan Poshpora, to Kolkata and held various programmes independently and with other organizations including students’ bodies. Following is a brief description of the programmes: Continue reading
Fact-finding in Kalaburgi
In the last week of June, the case of Ashwathi, a nursing student from a poor Dalit family being forced to consume toilet cleaner by her seniors came to light. On July 5th, 2016, a team from Women against Sexual Violence and State Repression (WSS) comprising of Gowri, Dalit feminist and activist, Savitha, Research Scholar, and Greeshma, Advocate visited Kalaburgi to understand the situation better.
This is their report.