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Technocratic globalism, tyranny? Health Ministry warned: bill to 'enslave' Indians

Sandeep Pandey, Tushar Gandhi
By Rosamma Thomas* 
Union of Concerned Citizens, a group comprising Magsaysay Award winner Prof Sandeep Pandey, human rights activist Tushar Gandhi, former judge of the Bombay High Court BG Kolse Patil, pediatrician Dr Jacob Puliyel and several renowned Indian citizens have written to the Union Health Minister cautioning him against tabling the draft Public Health Bill in the Monsoon Session of Parliament.
“The Public Health (Prevention, Control And Management Of Epidemics, Bio-Terrorism And Disasters) Bill, 2017 and a Prospective Bill of 2022 as discussed in news articles, is straightforwardly violative of Fundamental Rights of the citizens of India and therefore, Ultra Vires of the Indian Constitution. It contravenes several International Treaties and Conventions including the Nuremberg Treaty of 1947 which was enacted to ensure that no country would repeat such inhuman medical atrocities on fellow human beings”, the 12-page letter reads.
“Strangely, the Prospective Bill 2022, in its very intent, cancels the fundamental right to bodily autonomy and integrity, through mandating medical procedures, and with coercion, forced entry of private spaces and such further grossly illegal acts. This is a breath-taking onslaught on fundamental civil liberties,” it adds.
This bill would also repeal the Epidemics Act, 1897, which provides for compensation to citizens if measures like lockdown or night curfew restrictions are imposed. The letter points to lacunae in the process by which this bill was drafted, and suggests that data safety monitoring boards must be set up to determine the safety of measures proposed; such boards must also have expertise to encompass the full breadth of medical systems.
The letter warns that the draft bill ties up with the proposed pandemic treaty of the World Health Organization, and offers a detailed analysis of different clauses of the bill, their “dire implications and illegalities”. 
Chapter 2 of the bill provides for measures that can be taken even if a public health emergency “is likely to arise”. It provides that “any official or person” can enter and inspect, without prior notice, premises where a public health emergency has occurred or is likely to occur. No prosecution is possible if such action is done in “good faith”.
The letter explains that the World Health Organisation (WHO) intent of a global government in health would allow it to call a pandemic rather arbitrarily. It explains that the 2009 swine flu could not have been termed a pandemic, as it resulted in less than 20,000 deaths globally. Those offering the wrong advice to declare it a pandemic were later found to have financial ties to vaccine manufacturers. The WHO is now pushing for a repeat of its failures, the letter states.
The letter writers urge the government to pay heed to practitioners in alternative systems of healing in India, who have long experience of the nutrition problems and the diseases of India’s people. “A ‘Pandemic Treaty' that overrides/overrules national & local governments, would hand supranational powers to an unelectedbureaucrat/expert, formulating policy entirely at his own discretion and on completely subjective criteria. This is potential technocratic globalism and tyranny,” the letter states.
The letter offers an elaborate explanation for why terms like bio-terrorism could cause even more social disruption
The WHO attempt to amend International Health Regulations, 2005, in May 2022 failed as several countries opposed the amendments. “While these amendments did not go through, they may be brought back for deliberation either as modified amendments or in the form of a Pandemic Treaty currently being drafted and scheduled to be ready by 2024, with a working draft to be presented during the World Health Assembly in May 2023,” the letter states.
The letter offers an elaborate explanation for why terms like “bio-terrorism” could cause even more social disruption, as it could bring into play the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act, 2019, which makes it possible to designate a person a “terrorist” without due process of law.
The conditions under which “decontamination” will be conducted are not clearly defined – “What if someone has an eye infection? Will the removal of eyes be considered?” the letter asks, pointing to the vagueness of the definitions in the draft and the enormous potential for misuse.
The bill provides also for “quarantine”, which it defines as “the restriction of activities and/or separation from others of suspect persons who are not ill or of suspect baggage, containers, conveyances or goods in such a manner as to prevent the possible spread of infection or contamination”.
The word “suspect” is used in case of a crime, and is not appropriate in the context of disease. This definition shows that the “quarantine” could be of people who are not ill, and for an unspecified period of time.
“This entire Bill is violative of Article 19, 21 because it gives the government very wide powers to restrict civil rights and eventually, completely destroying it, and it gives rise to mass continuous surveillance and medical policing. The Bill is not limited to only the Schedules mentioned: it is all-embracing yet undefined and open ended,” the letter notes.
“If the government can insert things into our body, force us to take a medication, and do what it likes without, furthermore, allowing recourse to legal help or the police (which instead of protecting us from unlawfulness, will be co-opted into implementing the governments unlawfulness), then let’s be clear; this Public Health Bill is advocating a slavery system for the Indian people,” the letter notes.
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*Freelance journalist

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