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Amnesty's global call for pressuring release of Dalit Army leader Chandrashekhar Azad 'Ravan'

By Our Representative
Amnesty International has given a global call to all Dalit networks, human and democratic rights groups and civil society groups for a major campaign on September 28 to release Chandrashekhar Azad ‘Ravan’, Bhim Army leader, currently under detention in Saharanpur Jail, under the National Security Act (NSA), which allows for the state to detain people without charge or trial for up to a year.
Pointing towards the need for the campaign the statement says, “Since Chandrashekhar Azad Ravan's NSA detention ends in November, it is crucial to build pressure both from within India and around the world on the Uttar Pradesh government to not detain, intimidate and harass the Bhim Army leader, and release Dalit protestors who have been arrested for protesting peacefully.”
Noting how the Allahabad High Court in November 2017 observed that “the charges against Chandrashekhar Azad Ravan look to be politically motivated”, the statement regrets, “Although the High Court granted him bail in November 2017, state arrested him immediately after under NSA. Since then he continues to lead the struggle for the emancipation of Dalit people from the Saharanpur jail.”
Signed by Abhirr VP of the Amnesty International India, Arun Khote of the Peoples Media Advocacy & Resources Centre (PMARC) and Sanjeev Mathur of the Bhim Army, the statement says, “To ensure that your voices are heard by the Indian government, you can arrange solidarity gatherings outside the Indian embassy in your country”, the statement says, adding, “If you are able to organise events, we will be grateful if you could participate in this campaign and encourage others to show their support.”

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