Skip to main content

NIA raids on Allahabad human rights activists 'part of larger political repression' in UP

Counterview Desk 

The civil rights group Campaign Against State Repression(CASR)*,condemning the National Investigation Agency (NIA) raid on “democratic, farmer, student and anti-displacement activists in East Uttar Pradesh”, has said in a statement that “these raids happening now in Allahabad are part of a larger on-going campaign of political repression being undertaken in Uttar Pradesh”.
Conducted against the offices of Bhagat Singh Students Morcha (BSM) in the Benaras Hindu University and the homes of Peoples Union for Civil Liberties (PUCL) activists, the statement said, the raids “come in light of the recent attempts at suppression of the Bihar-based Kaimur Mukti Morcha’s leadership which has been at the forefront of the Adivasi struggle in Kaimur plateau against the blatant land-grabbing for creating a tiger reserve in the area.”


Since the morning of 5th September 2023, the National Investigation Agency (NIA) has been raiding the offices of Bhagat Singh Students Morcha (BSM) in Benaras Hindu University. Simultaneously, NIA has raided the homes of Peoples Union for Civil Liberties (PUCL) State President Seema Azad, her partner and advocate Vishwavijay, advocate Soni Azad and organiser of a workers' organisation Ritesh Vidyarthi along with political activist Manish Azad in Allahabad.
Along with these raids, NIA has taken Seema Azad, Vishwavijay, Soni Azad and Ritesh Vidyarthi with them to an unknown location in an unlawful manner that reeks of undemocratic political repression. Information regarding their whereabouts is unavailable.
At the same time, at BHU, when two students from BSM attempted to talk to the investigation team regarding the raid being conducted at their offices, the officers slapped one of the students, screaming at the students for “daring to question” the raid in any manner. Two of the students, Akanksha Azad, the President and Siddhi, the Joint Secretary of BSM are forcefully made to sit in the room and interrogated while their phone have been confiscated by the NIA officers.
These raids happening now in Allahabad are part of a larger on-going campaign of political repression being undertaken in Uttar Pradesh, with the house of activist Rajesh being also raided in Deoria district. Rajesh is an activist of the Khiriya Bagh-Azamgarh farmers’ movement and a member of the Samyukt Kisan Morcha.
Similar raids have also taken place in Chandauli district. The raids come in light of the recent attempts at suppression of the Bihar-based Kaimur Mukti Morcha’s leadership which has been at the forefront of the Adivasi struggle in Kaimur plateau against the blatant land-grabbing of their lands for the sake of creating a tiger reserve in the area. In the past, police have opened fire on peaceful protests of the KMM and repeatedly abducted their activists.
Political activists, lawyers, intellectuals, and students who extend their support to movements against the corporate plunder of resources backed by the Indian state and its loot of the lands of farmers and Adivasis are continuously being branded as Maoists in a bid to silence all dissenting voices that expose the Indian state’s anti-people policies.
Abductions, violence, seizure of property and police brutality have become common practices by the state forces against all such dissent. In a time when the brutalities and undemocratic practices of the Indian state have become so open, all democratic-minded, justice-seeking, peace-loving people must come together in organized resistance towards such suppression.
Campaign Against State Repression (CASR) strongly condemns the undemocratic raids on its constituent organisation, Bhagat Singh Student Morcha (BSM) and Democratic- pro-people activists and subsequent detention of 4 activists by NIA. 
We demand that these raids be stopped and detained activists be release immediately and unconditionally. CASR calls upon all the democratic progressive forces and individuals to join hands and resist this Brahmanical Hindutva fascist onslaught.
*AIRSO,AISA, AISF, APCR,BASF, BSM, Bhim Army, Bigul Mazdoor Dasta, bsCEM, CEM, CRPP, CTF, Disha, DISSC, DSU, DTF, Fraternity ,IAPL, Karnataka Janashakti, LAA,Mazdoor Adhikar Sangathan, Mazdoor Patrika, , Morcha Patrika, NAPM, NBS, Nowruz, NTUI, People’s Watch, Rihai Manch, Samajwadi Janparishad, Samajwadi Lok Manch, Bahujan Samajvadi Manch, SFI, United Against Hate, WSS, Y4S



What's Bill Gates up to? Have 'irregularities' found in funding HPV vaccine trials faded?

By Colin Gonsalves*  After having read the 72nd report of the Department Related Parliamentary Standing Committee on alleged irregularities in the conduct of studies using HPV vaccines by PATH in India, it was startling to see Bill Gates bobbing his head up and down and smiling ingratiatingly on prime time television while the Prime Minister lectured him in Hindi on his plans for the country. 

Muted profit margins, moderate increase in costs and sales: IIM-A survey of 1000 cos

By Our Representative  The Indian Institute of Management-Ahmedabad’s (IIM-A's) latest Business Inflation Expectations Survey (BIES) has said that the cost perceptions data obtained from India’s business executives suggests that there is “mild increase in cost pressures”.

Magnetic, stunning, Protima Bedi 'exposed' malice of sexual repression in society

By Harsh Thakor*  Protima Bedi was born to a baniya businessman and a Bengali mother as Protima Gupta in Delhi in 1949. Her father was a small-time trader, who was thrown out of his family for marrying a dark Bengali women. The theme of her early life was to rebel against traditional bondage. It was extraordinary how Protima underwent a metamorphosis from a conventional convent-educated girl into a freak. On October 12th was her 75th birthday; earlier this year, on August 18th it was her 25th death anniversary.

Govt putting India's professionals, skilled, unskilled labour 'at mercy of' big business

By Thomas Franco, Dinesh Abrol*  As it is impossible to refute the report of the International Labour Organisation, Chief Economic Advisor Anantha Nageswaran recently said that the government cannot solve all social, economic problems like unemployment and social security. He blamed the youth for not acquiring enough skills to get employment. Then can’t the people ask, ‘Why do we have a government? Is it not the government’s responsibility to provide adequate employment to its citizens?’

A Hindu alternative to Valentine's Day? 'Shiv-Parvati was first love marriage in Universe'

By Rajiv Shah*   The other day, I was searching on Google a quote on Maha Shivratri which I wanted to send to someone, a confirmed Shiv Bhakt, quite close to me -- with an underlying message to act positively instead of being negative. On top of the search, I chanced upon an article in, imagine!, a Nashik Corporation site which offered me something very unusual. 

IMA vs Ramdev: Why what's good or bad for goose should be good or bad for gander

By Dr Amitav Banerjee, MD* Baba Ramdev and his associate Balkrishna faced the wrath of the Supreme Court for their propaganda about their Ayurvedic products and belittling mainstream medicine. Baba Ramdev had to apologize in court. His apology was not accepted and he may face the contempt of court with harsher punishment. The Supreme Court acted on a public interest litigation (PIL) moved by the Indian Medical Association (IMA).

'Flawed' argument: Gandhi had minimal role, naval mutinies alone led to Independence

Counterview Desk Reacting to a Counterview  story , "Rewiring history? Bose, not Gandhi, was real Father of Nation: British PM Attlee 'cited'" (January 26, 2016), an avid reader has forwarded  reaction  in the form of a  link , which carries the article "Did Atlee say Gandhi had minimal role in Independence? #FactCheck", published in the site The article seeks to debunk the view, reported in the Counterview story, taken by retired army officer GD Bakshi in his book, “Bose: An Indian Samurai”, which claims that Gandhiji had a minimal role to play in India's freedom struggle, and that it was Netaji who played the crucial role. We reproduce the article here. Text: Nowadays it is said by many MK Gandhi critics that Clement Atlee made a statement in which he said Gandhi has ‘minimal’ role in India's independence and gave credit to naval mutinies and with this statement, they concluded the whole freedom struggle.

Youth as game changers in Lok Sabha polls? Young voter registration 'is so very low'

By Dr Mansee Bal Bhargava*  Young voters will be the game changers in 2024. Do they realise this? Does it matter to them? If it does, what they should/must vote for? India’s population of nearly 1.3 billion has about one-fifth 19.1% as youth. With 66% of its population (808 million) below the age of 35, India has the world's largest youth population. Among them, less than 40% of those who turned 18 or 19 have registered themselves for 2024 election. According to the Election Commission of India (ECI), just above 1.8 crore new voters (18-and 19-year-olds) are on the electoral rolls/registration out of the total projected 4.9 crore new voters in this age group.

Indians witnessing 'regression to Hindutva politics' under Modi ahead of elections

By Bhabani Shankar Nayak*  The forthcoming general election in India, scheduled from April 19, 2024, to June 1, 2024, to elect the 543 members of the 18th Lok Sabha and the new Government of India, carries immense significance for the preservation of India's identity as a liberal, secular, and constitutional democracy.

An equine landmark, Cheltenham Gold Cup centenary 'epitomized' heights unparalleled

By Harsh Thakor*  The Cheltenham Gold Cup  is the most prestigious jumping race in the British Isles Steeplechasing calendar and the Cheltenham festival, a cynosure of every English and Irish racegoer. Few sporting events match or surpass the sheer intensity, competitiveness and joy that radiates its legacy. Few moments are more pulsating than witnessing a Gold Cup or a Cheltenham festival. In addition to that the race is run amidst the background of an evergreen English countryside, encircled by hills and pastures, giving a sensation of a paradise or heavenly location.