Skip to main content

Maoist links? Jharkhand Dalit rights activist arrested for "opposing" Mandal dam

Family, neighbours of Naresh Bhuiyan
Counterview Desk
The civil rights organization Jharkhand Janadhikar Mahasabha (JJM), describing the recent arrest of Naresh Bhuiyan, an active member of the Bhartiya Bhuiyan Vikas Parishad and currently involved in protests against the Mandal Dam, as “unlawful”, has demanded that the state government should “immediately” initiate an independent enquiry into efforts to brand him as a Maoist.
JJM, in a statement, has said, “The psychological and physical integrity of Naresh Bhuiyan and his family members should be ensured. The government should also immediately release under-trial prisoners languishing in Jharkhand’s jails since a long time. And it should put an end to its practice of using false cases to harass human rights activists.”

Text of the statement:

On May 14, 2019, the local police arrested Jharkhand’s Dalit activist Naresh Bhuiyan from his home in Bhandar village (Dhurki block, Garhwa district). The police told Bhuiyan’s family members that he was being taken to the local thana for certain enquiries and would be released immediately. But when he did not return by 15 May, the family members went to the thana to inquire. They were not allowed to meet Bhuiyan. He was illegally kept in the thana and was not produced in the court for several days.
Even though copy of FIR has not been made available so far, information collected from sources indicate that Naresh Ram has been implicated on charges of links with Maoists. The charges are gross manipulation and far from truth. There are also reports of physical torture by the police.
Naresh Bhuiyan is an active member of the Bhartiya Bhuiyan Vikas Parishad and has been working for the rights of Dalits and Adivasis since decades. He is associated with several peoples’ movements like the Adim Janjati Parishad and the Visthapan Virodhi Jan Vikas Manch. Naresh Ram has actively participated in agitations against irregularities in grain distribution to particularly vulnerable tribal groups (PVTGs), Birsa Housing scam, cases related to human trafficking, issues related to direct appointment of eighth and tenth pass PVTG candidates to mention a few.
Mandal Dam
It is worth mentioning that Naresh Bhuiyan's is involved in protests against the Mandal Dam that is to be constructed on the North Koel river. Despite protests by people of villages that will be submerged, the Prime Minister laid the foundation stone of the Dam on January 5, 2019. This project will submerge 46 villages that will lead to displacement and loss of livelihood to thousands of Dalit and PVTG families. Lakhs of trees will be felled and the project will have huge adverse impact on the environment affecting the locals for all times to come. Having realised the harm caused by the proposed dam, the residents of the affected 46 villages have started agitating.
The illegal arrest of Naresh Bhuiyan on false charges is an attempt to weaken the protests against the construction of the Mandal Dam. It is also one more example of the anti-people attitude of Jharkhand’s BJP government. More than 6,000 Dalits and Adivasis of the state are languishing as under-trials in jails since years. Many have been booked falsely on charges of Naxalism. The police has been unable to produce any evidence against most of them. It also must be mentioned that in the last five years, the state government has even booked many human rights activists on false charges of sedition.
The Jharkhand Janadhikar Mahasabha strongly condemns the unlawful arrest and detention of Naresh Bhuiyan. The Mahasabha demands that the state government immediately initiates an independent enquiry in this incidence. The psychological and physical integrity of Naresh Bhuiyan and his family members should be ensured. The government should also immediately release under-trial prisoners languishing in Jharkhand’s jails since a long time. And it should put an end to its practice of using false cases to harass human rights activists.

Comments

TRENDING

India performs 'poorly' in Quality of Life Index, ranks 62nd out of 64 countries

Counterview Desk “Expat Insider”, which claims to be one of the world’s most extensive surveys about living and working abroad, in a survey of 20,259 participants from around the globe, has found that of the 64 destinations around the globe, has found that while Taiwan is the best destination for persons living outside their native country, closely by Vietnam and Portugal, India ranks 59th.

India's GDP down by 50%, not 23%, job loss 200 million not 122 million: Top economist

By Our Representative  One of India’s topmost economists has estimated that India’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) decline was around 50%, and not 23%, as claimed by the Government of India’s top data body, National Statistical Organization (NSO). Prof Arun Kumar, who is Malcolm S Adiseshiah chair professor, Institute of Social Sciences, New Delhi, said this was delivering a web policy speech, organised by the Impact and Policy Research Institute (IMPRI), New Delhi.

Youngest of 16 activists jailed for sedition, Mahesh Raut 'fought' mining on tribal land

By Surabhi Agarwal, Sandeep Pandey* A compassionate human being, always popular among his friends and colleagues because of his friendly nature and human sensitivity, 33-year-old Mahesh Raut, champion of the democratic rights of the marginalised Adivasi people of Gadchiroli, Maharashtra, has been in prison for over two years now.

Human development index: India performs worse than G-20 developing countries

By Rajiv Shah A new book, “Sustainable Development in India: A Comparison with the G-20”, authored by Dr Keshab Chandra Mandal, has regretted that though India’s GDP has doubled over the last one decade, its human development indicators are worse than not just developed countries of the Group of 20 countries but also developing countries who its members.

#StandWithStan: It's about Constitution, democracy and freedom of expression

By Fr Cedric Prakash SJ*  It is more than three weeks now: On the night of October 8, 2020, the 83-year-old Jesuit Fr Stan Swamy was taken into custody by the National Intelligence Agency (NIA) from his residence in Ranchi to an undisclosed destination. According to his colleagues, the NIA did not serve a warrant on Fr. Stan and that their behaviour was absolutely arrogant and rude.

Stan Swamy vs Arnab Goswami: Are activists fighting a losing battle? Whither justice?

By Fr Sunil Macwan SJ* It is time one raised pertinent questions over the courts denying bail to Fr Stan Swamy, who was arrested under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA), and granting it to Arnab Goswami, editor-in-chief of the Republic TV, arrested under the charge of abetting suicide of Avay Naik, who ended his life in 2018. It is travesty of justice that a human rights activist is not only denied bail but is also made to wait for weeks to hear a response to his legitimate request for a straw to drink water, while Arnab Goswami walks free.

India among heavily impacted by Covid-19, China 'notoriously' evading transparency

By NS Venkataraman* With the year 2020 inevitably ending in the next few weeks, the thought amongst the people all over the world is whether the coming year 2021 will be free of Covid-19 (often dubbed as Wuhan virus, as it known to have spread from Wuhan in China).In the early 2020, many people thought that Covid-19 would be a localized affair in China but later on, it proved to be a global pandemic.

Namaz in Mathura temple: Haridwar, Ayodhya monks seek Faisal Khan's release

By Our Representative As many as 23 members of the Hindu Voices for Peace (HVP), including the founder president of the well-known Haridwar-based Matri Sadan Ashram, Swami Shivananda Saraswati, and a one of its top monks, Brahmachari Aatmabodhanand, have expressed their “dismay” over the arrest of Khudai Khidmatdar chief Faisal Khan and three others on charges of “promoting enmity between religions” and “defiling a place of worship” after they offered namaz in Mathura’s Nand Baba temple premises on October 29.

Buddhist shrines massively destroyed by Brahmanical rulers in "pre-Islamic" era: Historian DN Jha's survey

Nalanda mahavihara By Our Representative Prominent historian DN Jha, an expert in India's ancient and medieval past, in his new book , "Against the Grain: Notes on Identity, Intolerance and History", in a sharp critique of "Hindutva ideologues", who look at the ancient period of Indian history as "a golden age marked by social harmony, devoid of any religious violence", has said, "Demolition and desecration of rival religious establishments, and the appropriation of their idols, was not uncommon in India before the advent of Islam".

Government of India 'refuses' to admit: 52% of bird species show declining trend

Finn's Weaver  By Our Representative The Government of India has been pushing out “misleading” data on the country’s drastic wildlife decline, says a well-researched report, pointing towards how top ministers are hiding data on biodiversity losses, even as obfuscating its own data. It quotes “State of India’s Birds Report 2020” to note that of the 261 out of 867 bird species for which long-term trends could be determined, 52% have declined since the year 2000, with 22% declining strongly.