Press Release February 6th 2020
40 Days On: Aftermath and the On-going Struggles in Uttar Pradesh
A five member team from Women Against Sexual Violence and State Repression (WSS) conducted a fact finding visit in four districts of Western Uttar Pradesh – Meerut, Muzaffarnagar, Shamli and Bijnor, on 1st and 2nd of February 2020 to document the situation 40 days after the incidents of alleged police brutalities, which occurred on December 18th, 19th and 20th 2019 in light of protests against the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA). The team met the people who have lost their family members to police firing and also those who were arrested and/or detained in the days following the incidents. Continue reading
FACT-FINDING ON THE UPDATING OF THE NRC IN ASSAM
“Sab keh rahe hain Bangladeshi ko hatana chahiye. Koi ye nahi bole ki ‘koi bhi genuine Indian ka naam nahi hatna chahiye’’
Between the 5th and 10th of November 2019, a nine person team of members of Women against Sexual Violence and State repression visited the state of Assam in order to understand the implications of updating the National Register of Citizens (NRC), particularly for the most marginalised people of Assam. The team travelled to the Barak Valley region, home to several Bengali Hindus and Bengali Muslims, to the Char and Chapori villages (the river islands and villages on the banks of the Brahmaputra), home to some of the most vulnerable groups of people – largely the landless Miyah Muslim peasants. The team also visited villages in the districts of Jorhat, Sivasagar and Hojai, home to those who fled erstwhile East Pakistan in 1964 and tea plantations on which migrant workers from Jharkhand and the Chhota Nagpur plateau toil. The team met with workers, peasants, activists, academics and members of civil society in all of these regions.
4 अक्टूबर 2019
ज़ुल्म, ज़ख्म, आज़ादी… कश्मीरी औरतों की आवाज़ें
कश्मीर घाटी में बंदी का आज 60वां दिन है।
यौन हिंसा व राजकीय दमन के खिलाफ महिलाएं (WSS) की चार सदस्यीय टीम (किरण शाहीन, नंदिनी राव, प्रमोदिनी प्रधान, शिवानी तनेजा) ने 23 से 28 सितंबर 2019 तक कश्मीर घाटी का दौरा किया। इस दौरे का मकसद भारत सरकार द्वारा अनुच्छेद 370 को निरस्त किए जाने के बाद से लोगों, खासकर औरतों व बच्चों, के साथ बातचीत करना, उनकी आवाज़ सुनना और मौजूदा परिस्थितियों को समझना था।
टीम ने श्रीनगर, दक्षिण में शोपियां और उत्तर में कुपवाड़ा व बारामूला ज़िलों की यात्रा की। हम विभिन्न क्षेत्रों के लोगों से बात कर पाए – अपने–अपने घरों में कैद बूढ़ी और युवा औरतों, स्कूल शिक्षकों, अस्पताल के अधिकारियों, फेरीवालों, सड़क किनारे के विक्रेताओं, दुकानदारों, बाग मालिकों, कबाड़ियों, टैक्सी ड्राइवरों, ऑटो चालकों, वकीलों पत्रकारों, एक्टिविस्टों और स्कूल व कॉलेज के छात्रों से। हमने गांवों व मुहल्लों के साथ–साथ स्कूलों, अदालतों और अस्पतालों का दौरा भी किया। यात्राएं बिना किसी योजना के की गईं और किसी के द्वारा निर्देशित नहीं थीं। हमारा मानना है कि हमारे द्वारा साझा किए गए विचार पूरी तरह से स्वतंत्र हैं। Continue reading
Zulm, Zakhm, Azaadi … The Voices of Kashmiri Women
Today is sixty days of the clampdown in the Kashmiri Valley.
A four-member team from Women against Sexual Violence and State Repression (WSS) (Kiran Shaheen, Nandini Rao, Pramodini Pradhan and Shivani Taneja) visited Kashmir Valley from September 23-28, 2019. The aim was to interact with people, especially women and children, to listen to their voices and understand the present conditions since the abrogation of Article 370 by the Indian government.
The team traveled across the districts of Srinagar, Shopian to the South and Kupwara and Baramullah to the North. We were able to speak to people of various walks of life – older and younger women stuck in their homes, school teachers, hospital functionaries, hawkers, scrap-dealers, roadside vendors, shopkeepers, orchard owners, taxi drivers, auto drivers, lawyers, journalists, activists and school and college students. We visited villages and mohallas as well as schools, courts and hospitals. The visits were made at random and were not guided by anyone. We consider the views we share as being fully independent. Continue reading
From 17th to 19th of August, a ten member fact finding team of Coordination of Democratic Rights Organisations (CDRO) and Women against Sexual Violence and State Repression (WSS), along with local activists, travelled across the state of Jharkhand and investigated incidents of violation of human rights in Jharkhand state. Please find a link to the team’s Press Release (Hindi Version) below.
Hindi Press Release Khunti FF 17-19th August 2018
Press Release 19th August 2018
From 17th to 19th of August, a ten member fact finding team of Coordination of Democratic Rights Organisations (CDRO) and Women against Sexual Violence and State Repression (WSS), along with local activists, travelled across the state of Jharkhand and investigated incidents of violation of human rights in Jharkhand state. The first case was the recent incident of the rape of five women in Khunti district, the second was the Betla Tiger Project and the team tried to speak with several persons on whom the Jharkhand state has filed cases of sedition. Following news coverage and reports from human rights activists in Jharkhand, the fact-finding team reached out to as many people as possible including the villagers, intellectuals, activists, journalists, lawyers and the police. Continue reading
Posted in Press Releases
Tagged Ghagra, Jharkhand, Khunti, Kochang, Palamu Tiger Reserve, Pathalgarhi, security forces, sedition, sexual assault, state repression, State Violence
CDRO & WSS Press Release on fact-finding related to police firing and killing of Anti-Sterlite protesters
The Co-ordination of Democratic Rights Organization (CDRO) and Woman against Sexual Violence and State Repression (WSS) team, consisting of 17 members undertook a fact finding from 16.06.2018 to 18.06.2018 in Thoothukudi, Tamil Nadu regarding the firing and killing of Anti Sterlite protesters and the Civilians on 22nd and 23rd May 2018. The fact finding team visited the family of the deceased, injured people in the firing, the villagers in the proximity of the Vedanta Sterlite plant, Bar Association of Thoothukudi, Trade Unionist and Civic and Administrative officials of Thoothukudi district.
During our visits and the interaction with the cross section of people involved in this Anti Sterltie protest movement, the fact finding committee has observed that the firing by the police on 22nd and 23rd of May at the Collectorate and Anna Nagar 6th Cross road were deliberate and pre-planned. Most of the people killed were specifically targeted by the police as they have been in the forefront of this protest. Out of 13 people killed, we visited 6 families of which 3 were a clear case of targeted killing of either leaders or active participants of the protest. The family members of all the deceased had claimed that they intended for a peaceful protest and not indulge in violent protest as claimed by administration. Most of them carried children and food packages for a peaceful protest at collector’s office. The state and Sterlite engineered violence to repress the anti-sterlite movement by indulging in unprovoked indiscriminate firing on the people.
As per the information received from the hospital authorities by the fact finding team, in total 125 were injured on both the days. The team visited 10 injured in the hospital of whom majority were bullet injuries in the ankle, knee and one bullet injured patient had to be amputated above knee. The compensation though immediately dispersed to the family members by the State was insufficient and they demanded further justice for the dead and the injured. The key observation from the family members of the deceased was that the post Mortem report was not handed to any family despite request. Instead they were threatened, beaten, lathi charged at the Hospital mortuary, some of the family members recalled that the police had asked them to file RTI to receive the post mortem report.
Witching Hunting/ Repression:
The local people of these villages informed us that there has been an ongoing police repression in the form of midnight raids, targeting innocent men and woman. The lawyer’s forum of Thoothukudi has said that more than 250 people have been detained and booked under various charges. It has also come to the knowledge of the team that 7 people have been booked under NSA act in the past one week alone.
The committee also visited villages around the plant and met men and woman who shared their health concerns. The incidence as narrated includes cancer of uterus, breast and other organs, skin disorders, blindness, infertility, respiratory problems like asthmatic bronchitis, severe gynaecological disorders affecting girls and woman and paediatric disorders with children born with mental retardation and other physical deformities, ENT problems etc. The government and the Sterlite had not taken any steps to mitigate these severe health problems. The villagers reiterated that such diseases were not as prevalent before the establishment of Sterlite plant.
- All cases registered against the protesters be withdrawn with immediate effect.
- All the arrested Anti-Sterlite protesters including those booked under NSA be released unconditionally.
- Immediate permanent closure of Sterlite copper smelter plant as a policy decision by the Government.
- Criminal Action under Section 302 of IPC should be initiated against the civil, police and management of the Sterlite company for their criminal negligence of duty and massacre of anti-Sterlite protestors
- All land acquired for the Sterlite plant through SIPCOT be returned to its original land owners.
- The compensation amount should be increased for those killed and injured, akin to the Mandsaur MP firing victims where Rs 1 crore was granted to each person killed and Rs 50 lakhs to the injured.
- To conduct health/Epidemiological survey in the Industrial belt of Thoothukudi to assess the various increasing disease patterns prevalent in the region.