An undisclosed Emergency
The CBI has raided the house of senior human rights lawyers Indira Jaising and Anand Grover. Human rights activists are angry and upset. Kavita Krishnan, rights activist and CPI (ML) leader, spoke to Vartika on the dangers facing India.
I want to remind you that there was a pastor and a poet in Germany named Martin Niemoller. He wrote a poem in Hitler's era which can be paraphrased as:
When it came to the trade unionists or the communists,
I did not speak up, because I was not a communist,
When it came to the Jews, I did not speak because I was not Jewish.
And when they came for me, there was no one left to speak for me.
Right now the Modi government is targeting critics and many of us are silent. But they intend that when they come after the ordinary poor people across the country, there won’t be people like Indira Jaisingh, Anand Grover, and Sudha Bharadwaj to speak for them. In fact, they want that when they come after the people of the country, there is no one to stand by them.
"Black Funding in a secret way"
The question of violating FCRA [Foreign Contriubtion (Regulation) ACT] by the Collective does not arise. I want to remind people that it was the Modi government that started the electoral bonds scheme. People have no idea how much foreign funding and corporate funding they get secretly. You cannot know nor do I know. They are getting black funding in the most secretive way. And they are targeting the people who stand in defence of the human rights of the weakest sections. This is a very serious matter.
The Modi government has given political parties the right to violate the FCRA. The Modi government changed the law and made such rules that action cannot be taken against political parties in the case of FCRA.
Through electoral bonds, the law has changed such that any country can give money to any party. Thus, they can buy any party or any government. You, and the ordinary people, will not even know for whom this party is working.
And the party that has done this is now accusing the likes of the Lawyers Collective and Teesta Setalvad? This is ironic.
If you have to act on the FCRA then first start with the BJP. Start with the RSS. Let them say in a transparent manner, how much money are they getting, and from whom? We do not know where and how much money they get. How much money did Modi get via Electoral Bonds? Why do not you reveal that?
I believe that this is the animosity of the Modi government towards human rights activists, and especially human rights lawyers in our country. Earlier, they targeted Sudha Bharadwaj.
If you look at those cases which have recently been fought by Indira Jaisingh, you will know that there is a human rights problem in the country. She even questioned the Supreme Court. When Priya Pillai was stopped from boarding a plane and going to England, she fought the case and won. She has raised many questions on the issue of sexual harassment.
In the case of Bhima Koregaon, arrests of lawyers and human rights activists are taking place; Indira Jaisingh fought the case in their defence. Anand Grover fought many important cases on the question of LGBT rights, and HIV AIDS.
This is not the first time that Indira Jaisingh and Anand Grover are fighting cases on human rights issues. They have been doing this for many decades.
Lawyers fighting cases of human rights are being attacked on a large scale, that was not the case in India's history. It is an undisclosed emergency, fascism, through the Modi government.
People like Indira Jaisingh, Anand Grover, Sudha Bharadwaj are precious gems who always stand in favor of the weak, who always question power. But the government does not see them in this way. The Modi government is in a way condoning human rights abuses. He does not want to fight any case against lynching, he does not want anyone fighting a case against sexual harassment, he does not want the LGBT community to fight any case for people or speak up for their rights.